Agendas of translation: Wallace Stevens, T. S. Eliot and Allen Tate in Origenes: Revista de arte y literatura (1944-56)
Lesman, Robert St. Clair
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This study examines the textual dialogues that emerge from the translation and publication of texts by U.S. authors in the Cuban literary magazine Orígenes: Revista de Arte y Literatura. The magazine, published in Havana from 1944 to 1956, is considered one of the most important in the history of Latin American literature. This dissertation analyzes the aesthetic, philosophical, political and religious foundations of texts by Wallace Stevens, T. S. Eliot, and Allen Tate in this new context, rather than from within the framework of the U.S. literary canon. It is thus possible to illuminate the explicit and implicit cultural dialogues that emerge from the interactions between texts of distinct cultural origins. This methodology is aimed at offering insights into the nature of cultural production in an international context and at expanding our understanding of the connections between two national cultures that have been kept artificially separate by an embargo for the past four decades. The text begins with the description of a methodology for studying literary journals and the function of translation within them. Then, Orígenes is placed in its historical, cultural and political context, and the thinking of each Cuban participant is described, illustrating how each writer contributes in a unique way to the overarching cultural projects of the magazine. The study then examines the textual interactions between each U. S. author and Orígenes, illustrating how each interaction contributes to a dialogue on themes of realism, history, imperialism, temporality, mysticism, technology, and exoticism. In narrating each textual dialogue, the study is attentive not only to the conceptual consonances and dissonances that emerge, but also to the crucial mechanics of textual transfer through translation.