Most scholarship that couples Poe and Borges focuses primarily on each writer's detective stories, refers only occasionally to their critical writings and the remainder of their fiction, and deemphasizes the cultural context in which Borges interprets Poe. In this book, Esplin explores Borges's and Poe's published works and several previously untapped archival resources to reveal an even more complex literary relationship between the two writers. Emphasizing the spatial and temporal context in which Borges interprets Poe-the Rio de la Plata region from the 1920s through the 1980s-Borges's Poe underlines Poe's continual presence in Borges's literary corpus. More important, it demonstrates how Borges's literary criticism, his Poe translations, and his own fiction create a disparate Poe who serves as a precursor to Borges's own detective and fantastic stories and as an inspiration to the so-called Latin American Boom.
Seen through this more expansive context, Borges's Poe shows that literary influence runs both ways since Poe's writings visibly affect Borges the poet, story writer, essayist, and thinker while Borges's analyses and translations of Poe's work and his responses to Poe's texts in his own fiction forever change how readers of Poe return to his literary corpus.
Publisher: University of Georgia Press
Number of pages: 256
Dimensions: 229 x 152 mm
Borges's Poe is at its best when it focuses on reception history, patiently working through Borges's various interpretations and appropriations of Poe's texts. . . . Ultimately, I'm convinced by Esplin's claim that Borges's texts fundamentally changed how Spanish American writers read Poe. But the questions remains: which Borges and which Poe? . . . . If we really want to rethink the literary relationships of the past in light of the present, we should recall that neither of the two terms stay put. Borges's Poe goes a long way toward explaining Borges's twentieth-century reinvention of Poe.--Jeffrey Lawrence "ALH Online Review "
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