The renowned Mexican poet and critic Octavio Paz assembled this important anthology the first of its kind in English translation with a keen sense of what is both representative and universal in Mexican poetry. His informative introduction places the thirty-five selected poets within a literary and historical context that spans four centuries (1521-1910). This accomplished translation is the work of the young Samuel Beckett, just out of Trinity College, who had been awarded a grant by UNESCO to collaborate with Paz on the project.
Notable among the writers who appear in this anthology are Bernardo de Balbuena (1561-1627), a master of the baroque period who celebrated the exuberant atmosphere and wealth of the New World; Juan Ruíz de Alarcón (1581?-1639), who became one of Spain’s great playwrights; and Sor Juana Inés de la Cruz (1651-1695), the beautiful nun whose passionate lyric poetry, written within her convent’s walls, has made her, three hundred years later, a proto-feminist literary heroine.
This is a major collection of Mexican poetry from its beginnings until the modern period, compiled and translated by two giants of world literature.
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