Ramón

Ramón

[gaw-meth the lah ser-nah, -mes]
López Velarde, Ramón, 1888-1921, Mexican poet. One of the major poets of Mexico, he deeply influenced the work of later poets, notably Xavier Villaurrutia. Although his poetry sometimes shows the influence of modernismo, he was one of the first poets to rebel against its labored aestheticism. His excesses are the result of a passionate quest for originality. It was his masterful treatment of the Mexican landscape, the contrast between the traditions of the countryside and the turbulence of the city, and his own anguished struggle between ascetic leanings and pagan sensuality that give his lyrics their peculiar tension, expressiveness, and drama. His first work, La sangre devota [the devout blood] (1916), was followed by Zozobra (1919). El son del corazón [the sound of the heart] and Poemas escogidos [selected poems] (1935) were published posthumously.
Magsaysay, Ramón, 1907-57, president of the Philippines (1953-57). When the Japanese invaded the Philippines (1941), he joined the army and was commissioned a captain. A guerrilla leader throughout the Japanese occupation, he was named (1945) military governor of Zambales province by Gen. Douglas MacArthur. While serving in the Philippine Congress (1946-50), Magsaysay presented a plan for subduing the Hukbalahap (Huk) guerrillas, which led to his appointment as secretary of national defense by President Elpidio Quirino. He reformed the army, captured the top members of the Communist party, and fought the Huks, combining strong military action with a land resettlement program. After a dispute with President Quirino, however, Magsaysay resigned from his post (1953). He left the ruling Liberal party and ran for president on the Nationalist ticket, defeating Quirino by a large majority. As president, he cooperated closely with the United States and pursued a program of land and governmental reform. He was favored to win reelection to a second term, but died in an airplane crash (1957) before the voting began.

See biographies by C. Quirino (2d. ed. 1964) and M. M. Gray (1965).

Lull, Ramón, or Raymond Lully, c.1232-1316?, Catalan philosopher, b. Palma, Majorca. Of a wealthy family, he lived in ease until c.1263, when he had a religious experience and was fired with ambition to convert Muslims to Christianity. He studied Arabic language and literature and founded (1276) a college in Majorca for the study of Arabic. In 1292 he went to Tunis and challenged Muslim scholars to public debates. He was forcibly deported but made a second trip to North Africa in 1307 to combat the teachings of Averroës and again was banished. The tradition that he was stoned to death on a third trip that began in 1315 cannot be substantiated. Lull's chief work—Ars magna [the great art]—was a defense of Christianity against the teachings of Averroës. Lull maintained that philosophy (including science) was not divorced from theology and that every article of faith could be demonstrated perfectly by logic.

See biographies by E. A. Peers (1946, repr. 1969) and L. Brophy (1960); study by J. N. Hillgarth (1971).

Menéndez Pidal, Ramón, 1869-1968, Spanish scholar and philologist. Menéndez Pidal was a noted authority on Spanish epic literature and the Spanish language, and was also a major modern historian. He directed the Revista de filología española and wrote Orígenes del español (1926). Among his studies in medieval literature are El romancero español (1910) and Poesía juglaresca y juglares (1924), as well as several works on El Cid. Spaniards in Their History (tr. 1950) is one of his best-known works.
Villeda Morales, Ramón, 1909-71, president of Honduras (1957-63). A physician, he was prominent in the Liberal party and served as Honduran ambassador to the United States and the Organization of American States. Selected president of Honduras by a constituent assembly, he launched a Liberal, prolabor regime that aroused considerable opposition, introducing welfare benefits, a social security law, and a new labor code. In 1963, 10 days before scheduled presidential elections in which the Liberal candidate appeared likely to win, Villeda was overthrown in an army coup led by Col. Osvaldo López. Villeda later served as head of the Honduran delegation to the United Nations. He died in New York City.
Serrano Súñer, Ramón, 1901-2003, Spanish politician. A conservative member of the Cortes (1933-36), he joined his brother-in-law, Francisco Franco, early in the Spanish civil war (1936-39) and became Nationalist minister of the interior (1937-40), of the press and propaganda (1939-40), and of foreign affairs (1940-42). Serrano Súñer played a major role in the political construction of the Franco state. A leading advocate of Spanish collaboration with the Axis during World War II, he had to resign as foreign minister and as president of the political council of the Falange when Franco adopted a cooler attitude toward Germany and Italy. He retired from public life in 1947.
Castilla, Ramón, 1797-1867, president of Peru (1845-51, 1855-62). He fought under Antonio José de Sucre in the revolution against Spain (1821-24) in Peru and took part in the civil wars that followed. An army general, energetic and resolute, he twice eliminated his rivals by armed force to become president. He developed the guano, saltpeter, and nitrate industries, helped to reorganize finances, abolished slavery in Peru, and promulgated (1860) a new constitution that became the basis of future Peruvian government.
Gómez de la Serna, Ramón, 1888-1963, Spanish novelist, biographer, and critic, b. Madrid. One of the most prolific and imaginative of modern Spanish writers, Gómez de la Serna was a precursor of surrealism. He sought to express the subconscious and portrayed modern man as a mannequin. He invented the greguería, a kind of surrealist metaphor in epigram form combining humor and poetic insight. Two collections of these are his Flor de greguerías (1933) and Some Greguerías (tr. 1944). Gómez de la Serna is known simply as Ramón, and his mode of literary expression as ramonismo. Among his many works are an autobiography (1948), lives of El Greco and Goya, and the novels El doctor inverosímil (1921) and El torero Caracho (1926). Antología (1955) and Obras completas (1956) are later collections of his works.
Grau San Martín, Ramón, 1887-1969, president of Cuba (1933-34, 1944-48). Professor of medicine at the Univ. of Havana, Grau San Martín opposed Gerardo Machado. He then joined with student radicals and the military junta that ousted Carlos Manuel de Céspedes and was named provisional president. Grau was in turn removed from office by a coup led by Fulgencio Batista y Zaldívar. He lost the presidential election to Batista in 1940, but he won in the free election of 1944 and as president launched a widely hailed program of social and economic readjustment. Corruption and nepotism were soon rife, and former supporters turned against him. A booming economy, however, favored the election (1948) of Grau's candidate, Carlos Prío Socarrás. Grau's political influence remained strong during Prío's regime, and when Batista ousted Prío (1952) in a second coup, he retained a measure of popularity. In 1954 he ran against Batista but charged fraud before the election and retired. After Batista's ouster (1959) by Fidel Castro, Grau remained in Cuba.
Pérez de Ayala, Ramón, 1880?-1962, Spanish writer. He was educated at Jesuit schools, which he satirized in the novel A.M.D.G. (1910). His early realistic novels, among them The Fox's Paw (1912, tr. 1924), reveal ties with the Generation of '98. After 1916 his novels became increasingly mature and lyrical; his characters became symbolic representatives of general human problems. To this period belongs his masterpiece, Belarmino y Apolonio (1921), a droll and profound story of two Oviedo cobblers. La paz del sendero [the peace of the path] (1903), El sendero innumerable (1916), and El sendero andante (1921), his major poetic works, show the influence of French symbolism. He also wrote satiric essays and dramatic criticism.
Cabrera, Ramón, conde de Morella, 1806-77, Spanish Carlist general. Noted for his valor and cruelty during the first Carlist war (see Carlists), he refused to accept the Carlist defeat in 1839 and continued the war in Valencia and Catalonia until driven into France in 1840. After a brief reappearance (1848-49) as the leader of Carlist guerrillas in Catalonia, he returned to France and then went to England. In 1875 he recognized Alfonso XII as king.
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