An intellectual is one who intervenes in the public discussion at the margin of his profession, in such a manner that publishing an article in a specialized magazine is not about being an intellectual, but a scientist or a professor. It is said that the figure of the intellectual has diminished –or even disappeared– but then, who are Vargas Llosa, Chomsky, Saramago, Hitchens, Krugman or even (whether we like it or not) Dr. Huntingon? The media, whom we usually accuse of the annihilation of these beacons of social conscience, is not its enemy but rather its natural habitat, one shared with the journalist or the professional commentator on a more open stage.
The present edition of Literal is dedicated to the encounter of this contemporary pensive figure. In this sense, we offer as a central theme of this edition an unpublished text from Octavio Paz: “Writers and artists in the history of Mexico”. Let this issue be a rendition to revive one of the most penetrating and enlightened intellectuals of recent times.