Manuel Puig was born in General Villegas (in Buenos Aires province). After graduating from Universidad de Buenos Aires with a degree in philosophy, he began working as a film archivist and editor in Buenos Aires, then in Italy. In the 1960s he moved back to Buenos Aires, where he penned his first major novel, "La Traicion de Rita Hayworth". Being of leftist tendencies, and seeing an oncoming rightist wave in Latin America, Puig moved to New York, where he wrote his later works (including "El beso de la mujer araña"). Puig lived in exile throughout most of his life. In 1989 Puig moved to Cuernavaca (Mexico), where he died in 1990.
Much of Puig's work can be seen as pop art. Perhaps due to his work in film and television industry, Puig managed to create a writing style that incorporated elements of cinema and television, such as montage. He also made much use of low culture in his works, soap opera for example.
Among his best known novels are "La traición de Rita Hayworth" (1968) (Betrayed by Rita Hayworth), "Boquitas pintadas" (1973) (Heartbreak Tango), and "El beso de la mujer araña" (1976) (Kiss of the Spider Woman).