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Eva the Fugitive

Eva the Fugitive

translated, with an introduction by ANNA BALAKIAN
Copyright Date: 1990
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    Eva the Fugitive
    Book Description:

    An early cameo of Latin American surrealism, Rosamel del Valle's erotic narrative of ecstasy and perdition creates the rhythm of the dream and the tempo of madness. Intermittently a waiflike young woman, Eva, intrudes into the daily routine of the writer. Her appearances are marked by a circle of red and the vision of a deep well with a star hanging over it. A tone poem of surrealist encounter, pursuit, and loss,Eva y la Fugawas written in 1930 and finally published posthumously in 1970, by Monte Avila Press in Venezuela. Anna Balakian offers here the first translation of the work into any other language. She brilliantly conveys in English the author's highly metaphoric language and the immediacy of surrealist experience, signaled in the narrative by frequent lapses into a haunting present tense. On their walks through the streets of Santiago, Eva and the narrator mingle in the fiesta atmosphere of the Chilean Amusement Park, with its gigantic Ferris Wheel. Bits of real-life dialogue float through the air. But the couple move on different wavelengths from the crowd and often from each other. Passing in and out of his life, Eva exercises a hypnotic fascination over the writer and makes an equally profound impression on the reader. This narrative is in the same genre as Gerard de Nerval'sAurélia, André Breton'sNadja, and Michel Leiris'sAurora, and should be counted among the most compelling works of twentieth-century surrealist literature.

    eISBN: 978-0-520-91042-3
    Subjects: Language & Literature

Table of Contents

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  1. Front Matter
    (pp. i-iv)
  2. Table of Contents
    (pp. v-vi)
  3. Introduction
    (pp. 1-20)

    Born in 1901 in Curacavi, Chile, of half Spanish and half American Indian ancestry, Rosamel del Valle led a double-barreled life. The first part he spent among the young literati of Santiago in the years when surrealism was emerging in Europe. Having lost his father at age seventeen, he was totally self-directed in his acquisition of a tremendous reading repertoire that included European philosophers and poets of the nineteenth century, a thorough grounding in classical literature, and a comprehensive knowledge of the literature of the United States. He kept current on a daily basis with the then emerging literatures of...

    (pp. 21-102)

    Does man turn his back on his own memories?¹ Or perhaps the dawn came in heavier footsteps than usually, with something obscure in the dew or in the oscillations that space provides for it in such a splendid way. For at that moment the dream began to invade me from the tips of my toes to my knees. It was a precise and persistent weight. Now this atmosphere covered me more and more, rising to my stomach, my chest, my arms, and finally my head. The dream! How light I must have felt in that awakening, and what winds were...

  5. Notes
    (pp. 103-105)
  6. Back Matter
    (pp. 106-106)