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Title: Brazilian concretism in Chilean neo-avant-garde poetry
Author: Robinson, Rachel Elizabeth
Awarding Body: University of Oxford
Current Institution: University of Oxford
Date of Award: 2018
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This thesis illuminates poetic works by three Chilean experimental poets, Cecilia Vicuña (1947-), Juan Luis Martínez (1942-1993) and Rodrigo Lira (1949-1981) by showing how they develop and expand upon Brazilian concrete poetics (1950sonward). Brazilian concrete poetry, characteristically a-syntactic, and focusing on the word and poem as object, creatively and often playfully performs a critique of the ways in which we interact with language and literature. I argue that the Chilean recovery of the experimentations of concrete poetry transfers the critique of language from an international sphere to the severe political reality of Chilean politics, particularly during or in relation to the dictatorship of Augusto Pinochet. In the introduction, I situate the three Chilean poets and the Brazilian concretists within the categories of 'neo-avant-garde', 'anthropophagic' and 'visual' poetry. In the first chapter, I demonstrate how Martínez, like the concrete poets, uses the page rather than the line as the unit of poetry in order to question the relationship between the signifier and signified, the author and the text, and society and the text, ultimately expressing a political critique of Chile. In my second chapter, I argue that, in keeping with the object poems produced by concrete poets, Vicuña's 'plastic' poetry (that is, one that can be continuously mouldable for the reader) invites the reader to participate with her in the creation of more equitable social formations. In the final chapter, I show that, following the line of antipoetics, Lira, challenging his literary lineage, uses the technique of détournement to create particularly Chilean versions of concrete poetry's conceptualisation of object-poems. In this project, I hope to make visible the work of relatively unknown writers of enormous talent and to contribute significantly to the literary history of the Latin American avant-garde.
Supervisor: Bollig, Ben Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available
Keywords: Concrete poetry ; Latin American poetry ; Chilean poetry ; Latin American Neo-Avant-Garde ; Visual poetry ; Brazilian poetry