Paris: Arthus Bertrand, 1853.
First Edition. Hardcover. Very Good. Xlvi, 383 pp, with a preface by the translator, A. Giraud. Dark pebbled cloth with five raised bands, marbled endpapers. Tight binding, light foxing, a few marginal pencil lines. First French edition of Sarmiento's most famous book, considered one of the most important works of Argentine literature and one of the most influential Spanish-language works of the nineteenth century. Written during a period of exile, the work traces the life of a violent Argentine gaucho named Facundo, using his biography as the basis for an analysis and critique of Argentine culture, which is characterized by a dichotomy between civilizing and barbaric influences. Sarmiento's views had a profound effect on discussion about the region's potential for progress and modernization. He was able to put his theories into practice when elected to the Presidency of Argentina in 1868.