Early Spanish American Narrative

9780292705661: Paperback
Release Date: 1st November 2004

Dimensions: 152 x 229

Number of Pages: 247

University of Texas Press

Early Spanish American Narrative

Paperback / £20.99

The world discovered Latin American literature in the twentieth century, but the roots of this rich literary tradition reach back beyond Columbus's discovery of the New World. The great pre-Hispanic civilizations composed narrative accounts of the acts of gods and kings. Conquistadors and friars, as well as their Amerindian subjects, recorded the clash of cultures that followed the Spanish conquest. Three hundred years of colonization and the struggle for independence gave rise to a diverse body of literature—including the novel, which flourished in the second half of the nineteenth century.

To give everyone interested in contemporary Spanish American fiction a broad understanding of its literary antecedents, this book offers an authoritative survey of four centuries of Spanish American narrative. Naomi Lindstrom begins with Amerindian narratives and moves forward chronologically through the conquest and colonial eras, the wars for independence, and the nineteenth century. She focuses on the trends and movements that characterized the development of prose narrative in Spanish America, with incisive discussions of representative works from each era. Her inclusion of women and Amerindian authors who have been downplayed in other survey works, as well as her overview of recent critical assessments of early Spanish American narratives, makes this book especially useful for college students and professors.

  • Acknowledgments
  • Introduction and Background
    • The Framework of This Study
    • Research into Native American Writing Systems and Narrative
    • 1. Narrative Accounts of the Encounter and Conquest
  • 2. The Seventeenth and Eighteenth Centuries: Literary Life in the Colonies
  • 3. The Struggle for Nationhood and the Rise of Fiction
  • 4. The Mid-Nineteenth Century: Romanticism, Realism, and Nationalism
  • 5. Late-Nineteenth-Century Narratives of Social Commentary and National Self-Reflection
  • 6. Naturalism and Modernismo
  • Conclusion: Then and Now
  • Notes
  • Selected Bibliography
  • Index

Naomi Lindstrom is Professor of Spanish and Portuguese at the University of Texas at Austin and is affiliated with the Program in Comparative Literature.

"Lindstrom makes a compelling case for the viability of colonial and nineteenth-century narrative today."

Raymond L. Williams, University of California, Riverside, author of The Twentieth-Century Spanish American Novel

"Early Spanish American Narrative is based on careful scholarship, but provides an accessible introduction to the Spanish-language literature of the Americas for the general reader as well as for scholars."

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