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Jose Emilio Pacheco and the Poets of the Shadows

Ronald J. Friis

2001
220 pages
$39.50
ISBN 0-8387-5492-9
LC 2001035468
Bucknell Studies in Latin American Literature and Theory

José Emilio Pacheco (1939- ) is Mexico's foremost living poet, and a major figure in contemporary Latin American poetry. José Emilio Pacheco and the Poets of the Shadows examines the dynamic of literary influence and the question of literary origins in Pacheco's first six books of poetry (1960's to mid-1980's). Ronald J. Friis appropriates Bloom's theory of poetic influence to investigate how Pacheco deploys literary allusions and intertextual references as a means of decentering the traditional centrality of the figure of the author. The poets of the shadows to which the title refers include Pacheco's precursors from prior generations of Mexican and Latin American literature, particularly Jorge Luis Borges, Alfonso Reyes, and Octavio Paz.

In analyzing Pacheco's relationship with these figures, Friis reveals the development of Pacheco's understanding of his role in his work and his desire to unite a social consciousness with an aesthetics. José Emilio Pacheco is the first book-length study in English of this ironic and critical poet: it is theoretically and historically well-grounded, and engagingly and clearly-written-and it will fill an important gap in the study of Latin American Literature.

About the author:

Ronald J. Friis is a member of the Department of Modern Languages and Literatures at Furman University. A graduate of the Pennsylvania State University, Dr. Friis is the author of articles on twentieth-century Spanish and Spanish American poetry. His current research centers on Mexican poetry and the visual arts.

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