Salvador Torrents and The Birth of 'Crónica' Writing in Australia


  • Catherine Helen Seaton University of Wollongong


Crónica, Salvador Torrents, migrant literature, Spanish,


Creative writing in Australian Spanish-language newspapers has to date taken many forms, from short stories to poems, from memoirs to crónicas. Crónicas are writings that comment on the happenings of daily life, social habits and the concerns of communities, at times employing humour and satire while at others adopting a more sombre tone. Crónicas are a significant genre because they serve the reading community by touching on many of the themes that resonate with the migrant experience. While Spanish-language crónicas first appeared in Australian newspapers in the 1970s, their origins in this country were established much earlier by a Spanish migrant from Catalonia, Salvador Torrents. Torrents fled persecution as a result of his involvement in anarchist politics and arrived in Australia in 1916, working in the sugar cane fields near Innisfail, North Queensland. Up until his death in 1952 he wrote profusely in a variety of genres, including the crónica, and his work was published in European and North American newspapers. This study examines the way in which Torrents’ writings on politics, family life, social customs and gender relations informed an international audience, projecting the migrant’s perspective of an Australian experience to a worldwide readership.

Author Biography

Catherine Helen Seaton, University of Wollongong

PhD candidate School of the Arts, English and Media Faculty of Law, Humanities and the Arts