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Selected Poetry of Delmira Agustini by Agustini, Delmira; Caceres, Alejandro; Barnstone, Willis; Caceres, Alejandro, 9780809325375
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  • ISBN: 9780809325375 | 0809325373
  • Cover: Hardcover
  • Copyright: 11/21/2003
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This graceful translation and bilingual edition is the first to bring English readers a representative sampling of the poetry Delmira Agustini published before her untimely death in 1914 at the age of twenty-seven. Translated by native Uruguayan Alejandro Caceres and including work from each of Agustini's four published books,Selected Poetry of Delmira Agustini: Poetics of Erosis a response to a resurgent interest not just in the poems but in the passionate and daring woman behind them and the social and political world she inhabited. Delmira Agustini was born in Montevideo, Uruguay, in 1886 to wealthy parents of German and Italian descent. She published her first volume of poetry when she was twenty-one and followed with two more in the next six years. But her life was cut short in 1914, when Enrique Job Reyes, her ex-husband of less than two months, shot her to death and then turned the gun on himself. Too sensual and explicit for a literate, but Catholic, Uruguay, Agustini's work was neither accepted nor easily understood during her lifetime--but it is now being discovered and studied. Caceres is at the forefront of a new critical approach to Agustini's work. In synthesizing and reviewing both Spanish-language and English-language work on Agustini, he provides the definitive resource for future inquiry and research. Noted translator and poet Willis Barnstone provides the foreword to the volume. Agustini's poetry reflects the emotional world of a young woman in the early twentieth century. Rich with exotic and erotic imagery, the poems populate an intangible atmosphere vibrant with color and mythological symbols. Agustini celebrated sexuality in her work as part of the struggle to empower women and served as a forerunner of other feminist poets. Carefully selected for this bilingual,en faceedition, the poems collected here track and highlight Agustini's development and strengths as an artist--including her methods of experimentation, first relying onmodernistaforms and later abandoning them--and her focus on the figure of the male, which she portrays as the crux of devotion and attention but deems ultimately unreachable. Caceres's introduction presents biographical information and situates Agustini's work and life in a larger political, historical, and literary context, particularly themodernismomovement, whose followers broke linguistic and political ties with the pathos and excesses of romanticism.

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