There are so many more classic Latina poets to discover (or rediscover) than is possible to list in one post. But for those just getting acquainted with this area of Spanish literature, you’ll find a good starting point here. Shown at right, Rosario Castellanos.
Presented here is a sampling of poets whose works have been fairly extensively translated into English, or whose achievements in their home countries were significant. The Latina poets listed following represent Cuba, Puerto Rico, a number of South American countries, Mexico, and Spain.
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Delmira Agustini (1886 – 1914) was a Uruguayan poet born in the country’s capital, Montevideo. Her first book of poetry was published when she was still in her teens. Many of Agustini’s poems dealt frankly with female sexuality, sensuality, and passion at a time when writing openly about such subjects was taboo.
Agustini’s life ended tragically when her estranged husband murdered her. She was only 28, and yet had already achieved much in the field of poetry.
Major works included El libro blanco (1907; The White Book), Cantos de la mañana (1910; Morning Songs), Los cálices vacíos (1913; Empty Chalices). Posthumous collections include El rosarío del Eros (1924; Eros’ Rosary), and Obras completas (1924; Complete Works). A selection of her poems, mainly in Spanish, can be found here, with commentary in English.
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Gloria E. Anzaldúa
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