World Literature

Childhood in the Works of Silvina Ocampo and Alejandra by Fiona J. Mackintosh

By Fiona J. Mackintosh

This quantity explores the topic of formative years within the cuentista and poet Silvina Ocampo (1903-1993) and the poet Alejandra Pizarnik (1936-1972). It attracts revealing comparisons among those key Argentine writers via their shared obsession with youth, arguing that an figuring out in their attitudes to youth is prime to an appreciation in their paintings. shut analyzing of assorted Ocampo texts, together with a few for kids, permits an exploration of her imaginative and prescient of adolescence via nostalgia, adult-child energy relationships, growing older and rejuvenation, and moments of initiation or imitation. Pizarnik is taken into account on the subject of the parable of the child-poet, and her baby personae are analysed via Breton's Surrealism, Cocteau and Paz; via her borrowings from Carroll's Alice in Wonderland and Breton's Nadja; and during her obsession with insanity, demise, orphanhood, violation and transgression. within the bottom line, Ocampo's works in attaining equilibrium among early life and age, while Pizarnik's poetic problem of exile from language parallels her deep experience of tension at being exiled from the area of youth.

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Additional resources for Childhood in the Works of Silvina Ocampo and Alejandra Pizarnik (Monografías A)

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This concept of anticipated plagiarism is an apt one for looking at Ocampo and Pizarnik, since it combines Ocampo’s love of reversing time with Pizarnik’s obsession with borrowings and rewritings from other texts. 60 Her relationships to other texts are less immediately obvious, though they perhaps engage more profoundly with the human emotional dramas of the original. Pizarnik’s article ‘Dominios ilícitos’, reviewing Ocampo’s collection El pecado mortal, was published in Sur in 1968. It is interesting that ‘El pecado mortal’ should be the story of Ocampo’s that most interests Pizarnik.

Qxd 28 15/09/03 10:09 AM Page 28 FIONA J. MACKINTOSH being coupled with ‘tímido burdel’ (Enumeración, p. 50) and the short stories ‘El amor’, ‘Los amantes’ and ‘Los celosos’ all mock aspects of heterosexual relationships. The sexual charge in Ocampo’s own circle would do nothing but encourage such an approach, given that with the excessively heterosexual exception of her husband and the ‘tan sabiamente femenina’ Victoria, she was surrounded, in the majority, by homosexual men. 54 Unlike Peri Rossi, however, Ocampo does not frequently propose different forms of love.

59) The reverse way of living is demonstrated as the Queen first screams, then sees her finger bleeding, then finally pricks it on her brooch. This reverse way of living will be discussed in Chapter 2 with reference to Ocampo’s ‘Autobiografía de Irene’. Albert Bensoussan in ‘Les jolis contes du Sud’ also likens Ocampo’s late work Cornelia frente al espejo to Carroll: la maison de vie se réduit aux dimensions d’un miroir au-delà duquel commencera toujours le monde à l’envers d’Alice . . ou de Cornelia.

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