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Light and Longing: Silva and Darío Modernism and Religious Heterodoxy


Sonya A. Ingwersen

Modernism as a literary aesthetic flourished in Hispano-America and Spain for over fifty years (1882-1935). Its surface and inspiration seem alien to us. Yet it was an age remarkably like our own: a time of alarmingly rapid change and uncertainty about the future. Dissatisfaction with a Church that seemed to have turned her back upon science and modern learning was rife among writers, artists and intellectuals. In religion as in other areas of life, the Modernist was an eclectic drawn to those ideas which have been rejected by Judaeo-Christian orthodoxy: the heterodox and the occult. Silva's De sobremesa and the poetry of Darío document the religious pilgrimage of an epoch.
Contents: A study of religious heterodoxy in Hispano-American and Spanish Modernist literature, with a close examination of Silva's Spiritualism in De sobremesa and the eclectic occultism manifested in Darío's poetry.