Providing a basis for understanding the main lines of development of poetry in Spanish America after Vanguardism, this volume begins with an overview of the situation at the mid-century: the later work of Neruda and Borges, the emergence of Paz. Consideration is then given to the decisive impact of Parra and the rise of colloquial poetry, politico-social poetry [Dalton, Cardenal] and representative figures such as Orozco, Pacheco and Cisneros. The aim is to establish a few paths through the largely unmapped jungle of Spanish American poetry in the time period. The author emphasises the persistence of a generally negative view of the human condition and the poets' exploration of different ways of responding to it. These vary from outright scepticism to the ideological, the religious or those derived from some degree of confidence in the creative imagination as cognitive. At the same time there is analysis of the evolving outlook on poetry of the writers in question, both in regard to its possible social role and in regard to diction. DONALD SHAW holds the Brown Forman Chair of Spanish American literature in the University of Virginia.
Subjects: Language & Literature
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