1904 – He was born Alejo Carpentier Valmont on the 26th day of December this year in Havana, Cuba.
1912 – The family traveled to Russia to collect an inheritance. While in Europe, they traveled widely through Belgium, Austria, and Russia before settling in Paris. There, Carpentier studied at the Lycee Jeanson de Sally, where he perfected his command of French, which the family spoke at home.
1919 – At age 15, he began to write, contributing music reviews to El Heraldo de Cuba and La Discusion. After attending Colegio Mimo and Candler College, Carpentier enrolled at the Universidad de la Habana as an architecture student.
1922 – He quit his studies to help support the family after his father disappeared. Within two years, he became chief editor of the experimental weekly magazine Carteles.
1928 – Still under the suspicion of the Cuban government, Carpentier was able with the help of French poet Robert Desnos to escape to Paris in this year. He remained there for eleven years. While in Paris, Carpen-tier presented the Afro-Cuban burlesque Yamba-O, with music by M. F. Gaillard.
1933 – This year, Carpentier’s first novel “Ecue-Yamba-O” was published in Madrid. While he was still living in Paris. The novel was not well received, but it contained elements that were to become hallmarks of Carpentier’s major works: exploration of black culture and identity in Cuba, and criticism of social oppression.
1941 – He married Lilia Esteban Hierro.
1980 – He died on the 25th day of April this year in Paris, France.