Poet, writer, literary critic and scholar.
Fernando Alegría was born on September 26, 1918 in Santiago, Chile, son of Santiago Alegría Toro and Julia Alfaro Olivares. He married Carmen Letona Meléndez on Jan. 29, 1943.
He received his M.A. from Bowling Green State University in 1941 and his Ph.D. from University of California at Berkeley in 1947.
From 1964 -1967 Alegría was a professor at the University of California in Berkeley. From 1967-1998 he was a Professor at the Stanford University and for many years he was Chair of the Spanish and Portuguese Language Departments there. He sat on the Board of Trustees at the Western Institute for Social Research (WISR) for about twenty years beginning with its inception in 1975.
Alegría served as Cultural Attaché from the government of Salvador Allende to the United States from 1970 through 1973. He has been the representative of the Royal Academy of the Spanish Language in the United States for many years.
Among the many awards he has received is the Latin American Prize of Literature.