Possible and Impossible Dialogues: Interpreting Clarice Lispector’s Interviews for Manchete and Fatos e Fotos

  • Claire Williams University of Oxford
Keywords: Journalism, literary interview, media, poetics, Brazilian celebrities


Traces of Clarice Lispector’s experiences as an interviewer of public figures for popular magazines can be found in her literary texts, which are full of unanswered questions and searches for identity. Her characters also often yearn for an interlocutor who might understand and appreciate them, with whom they might establish a dialogue. The interviews themselves are interesting from a biographical and aesthetic point of view but also because the choice of interviewees, ranging from sportsmen to actresses and First Ladies, paints a portrait of Brazil at two key moments in history: the late 1960s, in the depths of dictatorship, and the late 1970s, when it was governed by a less repressive, but still authoritarian and military government. This article discusses recurring patterns and structures, and Lispector’s creation of an interviewer persona, paying particular attention to the interviews not yet published in book form.