Meaning of SPANISH LITERATURE in English
- SPANISH LITERATURE
the body of literary works produced in Spain, consisting principally of those written in Castilian but including those in the Catalan language and the Galician dialect as well. Although the latter two forms have substantial literary traditions, it was Castilian, with its political and linguistic predominance, that established itself as Spanish. Literature in Castilian began to emerge in the 12th century. Its earliest surviving masterpiece, the epic poem Poema (or Cantar) de mo Cid (Poem of My Cid), appeared c. 1140 and was followed by other heroic narratives centring on subjects from Castilian feudal history. Clerics and scholars also began to produce learned narrative poetry on devotional themes at this time. Castilian prose was adopted in place of Latin for literary purposes in about the mid-1200s owing to the efforts of King Alfonso X of Castile and Leon. Compilations of Castilian laws, historical chronicles, and translations of Arabic scientific works were all undertaken in the vernacular under his direction. The 14th century saw the rise of such new forms as the moral tale and the chivalric romance. Spanish poetry came into its own with the Libro de buen amor (1330; Book of Good Love) by Juan Ruiz and reached a considerable degree of sophistication in the Italian-influenced lyrics of the Marqus de Santilla and the allegorical epics of Juan de Mena. The first masterpiece of Spanish prose fiction, La Celestina (1499), was a novel in dialogue form that was remarkable for the time in its psychological intensity and realism. The unification of Spain in 1479 marked the beginning of the Renaissance there as well as the start of the Golden Age (q.v.) of Spanish literature. Garcilaso de la Vega revitalized Spanish lyric poetry with his adept transformation of Italian metres into Castilian verse. The mystic poets St. John of the Cross and St. Teresa of vila treated spiritual and religious themes, while Luis de Gngora y Argote developed an ornate poetic style (gongorismo) that featured extravagant imagery, elaborate classical allusions, and complex syntax. In prose fiction, various genres emerged to replace the chivalric romance that had so long dominated popular taste. The pastoral novel was derived from Italian literature and idealized simple rural life. The picaresque novel was a native Spanish form that originated with the anonymous Lazarillo de Tormes in 1554 and reached its height with Mateo Alemn's Guzmn de Alfarache (1599). In its description of the comical adventures of low-born rogues, the picaresque novel guided Spanish fiction to the direct and candid observation of society and its mores. The greatest novel of the Golden Age, however, was Miguel de Cervantes' classic Don Quixote (part 1, 1605; part 2, 1615), which raised contemporary fiction to a new level of psychological subtlety and social insight. The Spanish drama, which had slowly evolved from medieval church plays, finally achieved artistic distinction in the work of Lope de Vega. Lope synthesized the disparate sources of the contemporary theatre and produced enormous numbers of plays that featured clever stagecraft and intricate, gripping plots. The most talented of Lope's successors were Tirso de Molina and Pedro Caldern de la Barca. While Tirso achieved considerable mastery of characterization, Caldern was unmatched in dramatic craftsmanship, producing tightly structured works whose formal artistry and thematic depth mark the high point of Spanish Baroque drama. By 1681, when Caldern died, Spain was politically and economically prostrate. Literary creativity, too, seemed virtually extinct. Recovery came with the 18th-century Bourbon dynasty, whose remaking of Spanish culture on French classical lines promoted many new ideas and institutions but less by way of worthwhile literary production. Spanish letters was reinvigorated by the Romantic movement, which arrived in Spain in the 1830s and achieved a rapid but brief ascendancy. Among the leading figures of Spanish Romanticism were the poet and playwright ngel de Saavedra, the playwright Jos Zorrilla, and the lyric poet Jos de Espronceda. Saavedra's play Don Alvaro o la fuerza del sino (1835; Don Alvaro; or, The Force of Destiny) embodied all the elements of the Romantic mode and triggered a series of works in a similar vein, culminating in Zorrilla's treatment of the Don Juan theme, Don Juan Tenorio (1844). After 1850 there appeared a new generation of poetsGustavo Adolfo Bcquer, Rosala de Castro, and Ramn de Campoamorwho succeeded in preserving the sensitivity and emphasis on feeling of the earlier Romantics while avoiding their formal and stylistic excesses. Spanish prose literature of the first half of the 19th century was dominated by costumbrismo, a genre that focused on the customs and manners of the inhabitants of a particular Spanish region or locale. The satirical form of the short costumbrismo literary sketch became the principal vehicle for Mariano Jos de Larra, who mercilessly criticized the foibles of the Madrid bourgeoisie in his Articulos (183537). A second form of the costumbrismo sketch that emphasized local colour and folklore laid the groundwork for the realistic Spanish regional novel that reached predominance during the last half of the 19th century. Marta y Maria (1883) by Armando Palacio Valds and Penas arriba (1893) by Jos Mara de Pereda are outstanding examples of the regional novel in their emphasis on the traditional values of religion, family, and country life. Juan Valera and Benito Prez Galds went beyond the limits of regional Realism, producing novels that dealt with broader and more universal concerns. Galds in particular thought in national terms in the 46 novels of his Episodios nacionales (187379, 18981912), which recapitulate Spanish history during the 19th century. Emilia Pardo Bazn experimented with Naturalistic writing but quickly returned to regional Realism after recognizing the incompatibility of Spain's deeply Catholic outlook with the determinism of French Naturalism. The only major Spanish novelist who found both the doctrines and techniques of Naturalism congenial was Vicente Blasco Ibez, as evidenced by those of his early novels set in Valencia. The ignominy of Spain's defeat in the SpanishAmerican War of 1898 caused many Spanish intellectuals to analyze the causes of Spain's long decline and reassess its traditional values, and a group of writers called the Generation of '98 soon attempted to revitalize their nation's cultural life. Foremost among them were the prose-fiction writers Miguel de Unamuno, Azorn (pseudonym of Jos Martnez Ruiz), Po Baroja, and Ramn Mara del Valle-Incln; the poets Antonio and Manuel Machado; and the philosopher-critic Jos Ortega y Gasset. The novelists among them broke from the regional Realist tradition, introducing innovative narrative and structural techniques as well as a new seriousness of purpose into the Spanish novel. The critical, psychological, and philosophical essay rose to new importance in Spain at this time, while many poets adapted the Modernist inventions of the Nicaraguan poet Rubn Daro. Other significant Spanish literary artists during the early 20th century were the novelist Ramn Prez de Ayala and the lyric poet Juan Ramn Jimnez. A group of brilliant poets known as the Generation of 1927 (Federico Garca Lorca, Pedro Salinas, Jorge Guilln, Vicente Aleixandre, and Rafael Alberti, among others) followed in the footsteps of the Machado brothers and Jimnez. They took inspiration from Spain's literary past as well as from contemporary trends such as Surrealism to produce an intensely personal poetry characterized by the sophisticated use of symbolic imagery and myth. During the early 20th century, Spanish drama achieved new vigour with the witty bourgeois satires of Jacinto Benavente y Martnez, the historical dramas of Eduardo Marquina, and the intense, lyrical tragedies of Garca Lorca. The Spanish Civil War (193639) drove many gifted writers into political exile and broke the continuity of Spanish literature. The trauma of the war and its cultural and economic repercussions gave rise to various forms of intense realism in literature, as exemplified by the tremendismo (a blend of Naturalistic techniques and Existentialist views) of Camilo Jos Cela and the stark Social Realism of such politically committed novelists as Carmen Martn Gaite and Elena Quiroga. From the early 1960s, experimentation with structure, narrative technique, and language became a key concern, as seen in the works of Juan Goytisolo, Jos Mara Gironella, and others who had earlier embraced Social Realism. Formal and technical innovations similarly are important elements in the drama of Antonio Buero Vallejo and in that of Fernando Arrabal, a proponent of Absurdist theatre, while Alfonso Sastre favoured a more direct, committed approach to social problems in his writings. Lyric poetry since the Civil War reflects a trend away from the complexities of the Modernists and the Generation of 1927 and toward a simpler approach stressing discipline of form, clarity of expression through direct imagery, and increased social content. This direction in lyric expression is best represented by the works of such poets as Gabriel Celaya, Blas de Otero, and Claudio Rodrguez. the body of literary works produced in Spain. Such works fall into three divisions according to language: Castilian, Catalan, and Galician. This article provides a brief historical account of the development of each of these three literatures and treats specifically the development of major genres. Although literature in the vernacular was not written until the medieval period, Spain had already made considerable contributions to literature. The two Senecas, Lucan, Martial, Quintilian, and Prudentius are among writers in Latin who lived in, or were born in, Spain before the separation of the Romance languages. For their writings, see Latin literature: Ancient Latin literature. Later, the writings of Spanish Muslims and Jews form an important branch of Arabic and Hebrew literature. For a survey of the literature of the former Spanish colonies in the Americas, see Latin-American literature. Additional reading Castilian Gerald Brenan, The Literature of the Spanish People: From Roman Times to the Present, 2nd ed. (1953, reprinted 1976); Richard E. Chandler and Kessel Schwartz, A New History of Spanish Literature (1961); George T. Northup, An Introduction to Spanish Literature, 3rd ed. rev. by Nicholson B. Adams (1960), a good, readable history; Philip Ward (ed.), The Oxford Companion to Spanish Literature (1978); and Francisco Rico (general ed.), Historia y crtica de la literatura espaola, 8 vol. (198084).The following works focus on specific periods or trends of Spanish literary history: Otis H. Green, The Literary Mind of Medieval and Renaissance Spain (1970), essays by an eminent scholar; A.D. Deyermond, The Middle Ages (1971), a very good introduction, with bibliography; Otis H. Green, Spain and the Western Tradition: The Castilian Mind in Literature from El Cid to Caldern, 4 vol. (196366), readable and authoritative; R.O. Jones, The Golden Age: Prose and Poetry: The Sixteenth and Seventeenth Centuries (1971), an excellent introduction; Edward M. Wilson and Duncan Moir, The Golden Age: Drama (1971), essential reading; John A. Cook, Neo-Classic Drama in Spain: Theory and Practice (1959, reprinted 1974); Robert E. Pellissier, The Neo-Classic Movement in Spain During the XVIII Century (1918); Nigel Glendinning, The Eighteenth Century (1972); Donald L. Shaw, The Nineteenth Century (1972); E. Allison Peers, A History of the Romantic Movement in Spain, 2 vol. (1940, reprinted 1964), a comprehensive account; L.B. Walton, Prez Galds and the Spanish Novel of the Nineteenth Century (1927, reprinted 1970), a somewhat dated but still useful account; Gonzalo Torrente Ballester, Panorama de la literatura espaola contempornea, 3rd ed. (1965), studies and selections, and Teatro espaol contemporneo, 2nd ed. (1968); Ramn Castelltort, La poesia lrica espaola del siglo XX (1957); Juan L. Alborg, Hora actual de la novela espaola, 2 vol. (195862); Paul Ilie, The Surrealist Mode in Spanish Literature: An Interpretation of Basic Trends from Post-Romanticism to the Spanish Vanguard (1968), the first examination of Spanish Surrealism, and Literature and Inner Exile: Authoritarian Spain, 19391975 (1980); G.G. Brown, A Literary History of Spain, vol. 6, The Twentieth Century (1972), one of the most thorough surveys in either English or Spanish. Catalan Joan Ars, Evoluci de la poesia catalana (1922); Octavi Saltor, Les idees literries en la renaixena catalana (1934); Martn De Riquer, Resumen de literatura catalana (1947), and Los Trovadores, 3 vol. (1975, reissued 1983; originally published as La lrica de los trovadores, 1948), an anthology with notes; Joan Ruiz I Calonja, Histria de la literatura catalana (1954); Joan Triad (comp.), Anthology of Catalan Lyric Poetry, ed. by Joan Gili (1953, reprinted 1976); and Arthur Terry, Catalan Literature (1972). Galician Alvaro De Las Casas (comp.), Antologa de la lrica gallega (1928); Rosala De Castro, Poems, trans. by Charles David Ley (1964); P. Jos Mourio, La literatura medioeval en Galicia (1929); and Benito Varela Jcome, Histria de la literatura gallega (1951). William C. Atkinson Angel M. Garca-Gmez Castilian literature The era of the Renaissance The beginning of the Siglo de Oro The unification of Spain in 1479 and Columbus' discovery of the New World (1492), following the introduction of printing (1474) and concurrent with the cultural traffic with Italy (Naples had been a dependency of Aragon since 1443), may be taken as opening the era of the Renaissance in Spain. In this periodknown as the Siglo de Oro or Golden AgeSpanish literature reflected the wealth of new experience born of overseas adventure and the detached questioning attitude to the rediscovered norms of classical authority. The early Spanish humanists included the first grammarians and lexicographers of any Romance tongue. Juan Luis Vives, the brothers Juan and Alfonso de Valds, and others were followers of Erasmus, whose writings circulated in translation from 1536 and whose influence was seen in the Counter-Reformation figure of St. Ignatius of Loyola, founder of the Society of Jesus, and later in a religious writer and poet, Fray Luis de Len. The masterpiece of the early Renaissance is the Comedia de Calixto y Melibea (1499), a novel in dialogue form published anonymously but attributed to a converted Jew, Fernando de Rojas. The dominant character, a procuress called Celestina, depicted with a realism unsurpassed in Spanish letters, gave this work the title by which it is most commonly known, La Celestina. The analysis of passion and the dramatic conflict that its pursuit involved were worked out with such psychological intensity as to make this the first masterpiece of Spanish prose and Spain's first realistic novel. Poetry Spanish ballads, or romances, link medieval heroic epic to 20th-century poetry and drama; they lie at the heart of the national consciousness; and their expansion and capacity for survival, from Salonika to Chile and from the Low Countries to North Africa, reflect the far-flung boundaries of Spain's prestige in its age of greatness. The earliest datable romances (mid-15th century) treated of frontier incidents or lyrical themes. The ballads on medieval heroic themes had importance because they formed everyman's source book on national history and character. Traditional ballads were collected in the Antwerp Cancionero de romances (Ballad Songbook) and in the Silva de varios romances (Miscellany of Various Ballads), both c. 1550, and thereafter repeatedly. Soon the form (octosyllabic, alternate lines having a single assonance throughout) was exploited for lyrical purposes by the most famous poets of the age, and it has remained the chosen medium for popular narrative verse. The earlier attempt to Italianize Spanish poetry had failed because Spanish language and verse techniques were still incapable of sustaining the burden. The Catalan Juan Boscn Almogver, reintroducing Italian metres (see below Catalan literature), prepared the way for a much greater poet, Garcilaso de la Vega, with whom the lyric was reborn. To his mastery of poetic technique derived from medieval and classical poets he added an intense personal note in the use of characteristic Renaissance themes. His short poems, elegies, and sonnets largely determined the course of lyric poetry throughout the Siglo de Oro. Fray Luis de Len, adopting some of Garcilaso's verse techniques, typified the Salamanca school, with its emphasis on content rather than form. The poet and critic Fernando de Herrera headed a contrasting school of Seville, which, deriving equally from Garcilaso, was concerned rather with subtleties of refined sentiment; in a quartet of remarkable odes he gave vibrant expression to topical heroic themes. A defense of the short native metres was reinforced by the aforementioned traditional ballad collections (romanceros) and by the evolving drama. For epic poetry the models were Ariosto and Tasso, but the themes and heroes were those of overseas conquest and expansion or defense of the empire and the faith. Alonso de Ercilla y Ziga came nearest to real achievement with his Araucana (published 156990), telling of native resistance to the Spanish conquest of Chile. Another typical example of the attempt at epic is Lope de Vega's Dragontea (1598), a verse history of Sir Francis Drake's last voyage and death. Castilian literature The 18th century With the establishment of the Bourbon dynasty after the War of the Spanish Succession (170114), renewal of the country's intellectual life began. Numerous academies were created, the most influential being the Real Academia de la Lengua Espaola (now the Real Academia Espaola), founded in 1713 to maintain the purity of the language. Men of letters began again to study abroad and discovered how far Spain had deviated from the intellectual course of western Europe. A new spirit of inquiry into the national heritage caused scholars to go back and unearth forgotten medieval literature. Gregorio Mayns y Siscar wrote the first biographical study of Cervantes. A church historian, Enrique Flrez, embarking on a vast historical enterprise, Espaa sagrada, helped resurrect the whole cultural background of medieval Christian Spain. Landmarks of even greater importance were the publication of the 12th-century epic Poema de mo Cid, the works of Gonzalo de Berceo, and Juan Ruiz' Libro de buen amor, all for the first time. From all this there resulted a debate between old and new that waged throughout the middle decades of the century, compelled both sides to reason out their positions, and marked the birth of a new critical approach to literature. Two names stand out: Ignacio de Luzn Claramunt, whose work on poetics launched the great Neoclassical polemic in Spain, and Benito Jernimo Feijo y Montenegro, a Benedictine monk who, in assailing error, prejudice, and superstition wherever he found them, made a monumental contribution to the intellectual emancipation of Spain. Imaginative prose produced the Noches lgubres (published 178990; Sad Nights) of Jos Cadalso Vzquez, looking forward to Romanticism, and the Fray Gerundio (1758) of Jos Francisco de Isla, a satire looking back to the picaresque novel. Poetry, moribund for nearly 100 years, raised a timid head in a small group at Salamanca, led by Diego Gonzlez, which toward 1775 turned for inspiration to Fray Luis de Len, just as two decades later a group at Seville sought to revive the glories of Herrera. Juan Melndez Valds, who learned to think from the English philosopher John Locke and to feel from the English poet Edward Young, best exemplified the combination of new influences at work. A conscious artificer rather than a great poet, he helped poetry through the painful apprenticeship necessary to its rehabilitation. In drama, the second half of the century saw a great battle over the Neoclassical rules (meaning chiefly the unities of place, time, and action). La Raquel (1778), by Vicente Antonio Garca de la Huerta Muoz, showed the capabilities of the reformist school. It fell to Ramn de la Cruz to bridge the gap by his resurrection of the earlier paso (one-act prose skit) and longer entremeses (interludes) of Lope de Rueda, Cervantes, and Luis Quiones de Benavente. Based on satirical observation of the Madrid scene, his one-act sketches did not transgress the unities or offend the purist; at the same time they delighted the public and brought the drama back to commenting on life and society. Leandro Fernndez de Moratn applied the lesson to the full-length play and produced comedies imbued with deep social seriousness which were yet good theatre. His dialogue in La comedia nueva (1792; The New Comedy) and in El s de las nias (1806; The Maiden's Consent) ranks among the best prose of the 18th century. Castilian literature The 19th century The Romantic movement Literature in Spain in the first third of the 19th century was still affected by the Napoleonic Wars and their long aftermath. Many liberals driven into exile by Ferdinand VII after 1823 sought refuge in France; and, when they returned to Spain after his death in 1833, they had been so influenced by French Romanticism that this date has been taken as the beginning of the Romantic movement in Spain. The ground had been prepared in Cdiz from 1814 onward in a debate initiated by a German, Johann Niklaus Bhl von Faber, on literary values; in Barcelona with the founding in 1823 of a review, El europeo; and in Madrid with Agustn Durn's essay in 1828 on the drama of the Siglo de Oro and his Coleccin de romances antiguos (182832). Romanticism in Spain was, in many respects, a return to the spirit of its own earlier classics. The formal characteristics of Spanish Romantic dramamingling of genres, rejection of the unities, metrical varietyhad characterized the drama of Lope de Vega and his contemporaries, who had, moreover, treated many of its themes. The movement arrived in Spain a generation later than elsewhere and had a short life. It never became a school or had a particular leader. Jos de Espronceda was the one Romantic who lived his Romanticism. His Estudiante de Salamanca (appeared in two parts, 1836 and 1837; Student of Salamanca), Canciones (1840; Songs), and an unfinished work, El diablo mundo (1840; The Devilish World), were the only subjective lyrics of value that the period produced, and they marked a milestone in the development of poetic form. A play, Don lvaro o la fuerza del sino (1835; Don Alvaro; or, The Force of Destiny), by ngel de Saavedra, duque de Rivas, and the preface, by the critic Antonio Alcal Galiano, to Saavedra's narrative poem El moro expsito (1834; The Foundling Moor), came nearest to expressing a philosophy of Romanticism. Three poets revealed how one of Romanticism's concerns was liberation of the individual personality. Gustavo Adolfo Bcquer, in 76 Rimas (published 1871; Rhymes), expressed his own tortured emotions; Ramn de Campoamor y Campoosorio wrote Doloras (1845; Sufferings), Pequeos poemas (1871; Little Poems), and Humoradas (new poetic forms of his invention, published in 1886), attempting to bring poetry back into the realm of ideas; and Gaspar Nez de Arce wrote Gritos del combate (1875; Combat Cries), patriotic, declamatory exhortations defending democracy. Costumbrismo Costumbrismo was a movement that started earlier than Romanticism and flourished at the same time. It concerned realistic prose writing, often within a narrative framework. Both the cuadro de costumbres and the artculo de costumbres were short literary sketches on customs, manners, or character, but the cuadro inclined to description for its own sake, whereas the artculo was more critical and satirical. Cartas de un pobrecito holgazn (1820; Letters from a Poor Idler), by Sebastin de Miano, was probably the first work of this kind, but the most important were by Mariano Jos de Larra, outstanding prose writer and most critical mind of his age, who dissected society pitilessly in Artculos (183537); by Ramn de Mesonero Romanos, whose Escenas matritenses (183642; Scenes of Madrid) gave a vivid picture of contemporary life; and by Serafn Estbanez Caldern, who portrayed the manners, folklore, and history of Andalusia in Escenas andaluzas (1847; Andalusian Sketches). These writings and other similar pieces, with their realistic and regional elements, helped to prepare for a revival of the novel. Castilian literature The modern period The Generation of '98 For more than two decades before 1900, a mood of seething political and social analysis developed in Spain that gave in ngel Ganivet's Idearium espaol (1897; Spain, an Interpretation) one of the most searching analyses of the Spanish character ever written. The imperial cycle, begun in 1492, ended in ignominy with the SpanishAmerican War of 1898, and thinking Spaniards embarked on a diagnosis of their country's ills and an attempt to shock the national mentality out of its abulia, or lack of will. The novel was injected with a new seriousness of purpose, and the critical, psychological, and philosophical essay rose to new importance. Novelists and essayists constituted what Azorn (pseudonym of Jos Martnez Ruiz) called the Generation of '98, a group that regained respect for Spanish letters abroad. Miguel de Unamuno, who dominated the literary scene for a generation, studied the national problem acutely in the five essays in En torno al casticismo (1895; On Spanish Purism) and in the Vida de Don Quijote y Sancho (1905; The Life of Don Quixote and Sancho). He examined the problem of immortality in his most important work, Del sentimiento trgico de la vida (1913; The Tragic Sense of Life in Men and Peoples). A provocative rather than a systematic thinker, he aimed at sowing spiritual disquiet. The novel was to him a medium for discussion of the fundamentals of personality; his own include Niebla (1914; Mist), Abel Snchez (1917; Eng. trans., Abel Snchez), and Tres novelas ejemplares y un prlogo (1920; Three Cautionary Tales and a Prologue). Azorn concerned himself with the reinterpretation of earlier literary values and of the Spanish countryside in, for example, El alma castellana (1900; The Castilian Soul), La ruta de Don Quijote (1905; Don Quixote's Route), and Clsicos y modernos (1913). An artist in criticism and a finely sensitive miniaturist, he contributed powerfully to the deflation of the rhetoric that had vitiated much 19th-century writing. A philosopher, Jos Ortega y Gasset, developed themes from criticism and psychology (Meditaciones del Quijote [1914; Meditations on Quixote]) to national problems (La Espaa invertebrada [1921; Invertebrate Spain]), then to international (El tema de nuestro tiempo [1923; The Modern Theme] and La rebelin de las masas [1929; The Revolt of the Masses]). Po Baroja repudiated tradition, religion, and the cult of the individual and advocated social action. La raza (The Race), La lucha por la vida (1904; The Struggle for Life), and Agonas de nuestro tiempo (1926; Agonies of Our Time) were fiercely vigorous attempts to arouse discontent with material conditions. As vigorous but possessing greater narrative skill was Vicente Blasco Ibez, who wrote on contemporary social problems from the standpoint of an anarchist, as in La bodega (1905; The Wine Vault) and La horda (1905; The Mob). He won international renown with Los cuatro jinetes del apocalipsis (1916; The Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse), a novel of World War I. The term novecentistas is applied to writers of the early 20th century who sought to renew intellectual and aesthetic standards after the passionate involvement of their immediate predecessors. The novel In Ramn Prez de Ayala, the novel was at once a polished art form and a forum for philosophical discussion. Belarmino y Apolonio (1921; Belarmino and Apolonio), a projection of the old debate between faith and reason, made its characters almost symbolic, as did Tigre Juan (1926; Tiger Juan), on the traditional theme of honour. Gabriel Mir's perfect descriptive prose retarded the action of his novels, but he remained a supreme artist in words. The novel as a literary form fell under the influence of Ortega y Gasset, who in La deshumanizacin del arte (1925; The Dehumanization of Art) propounded principles of a pure, depersonalized art. Analyzing the novel as an art form, he predicted its decline. In the following decade Benjamn Jarns and others attempted, without complete success, to apply a technique of pure art to the novel; Jarns' works were outstanding examples of the Surrealist novel in Spain. The Spanish Civil War (193639) drove into political exile some promising novelists whose narrative art matured abroad. Max Aub analyzed the civil conflict in an artistically and thematically impressive cycle of novels entitled El laberinto mgico (194368; The Magic Labyrinth). Ramn Jos Sender, whose pre-Civil War novels had been realistic and overtly sociopolitical, developed an interest in the mysterious and irrational. While his trilogy Crnica del alba (194266; Chronicle of the Dawn) dwelt on the Civil War in a realistic manner, his magic, myth-dominated world of Epitalamio del prieto Trinidad (1942; Dark Wedding) or Las criaturas saturnianas (1968; Saturnine Beings) pointed toward more universal concerns. Francisco Ayala abandoned his youthful aestheticism to cultivate Spanish and human themes in short stories and novels (e.g., Muertes de perro [1958; Death as a Way of Life]) of multiple perspective and complex narrative techniques. In the aftermath of the Civil War the narrative in Spain went into a relative decline, only occasionally arrested by such successes as the psychologically perceptive La familia de Pascual Duarte (1942; The Family of Pascual Duarte) of Camilo Jos Cela. This novel created a vogue for a form of harsh, sordid, unsentimental realism known as tremendismo. Always wedded to literary experimentation, Cela attempted more ambitious technical heights in his later novel La colmena (1951; The Hive), which provides a panorama of Madrid society during the post-Civil War period. The sociopolitical trauma of the civil conflict with its cultural and economic uncertainty fostered a return of outmoded forms of Realism. Conventional reading was provided by such craftsmen as Juan Antonio de Zunzunegui and Ignacio Agust. Jos Mara Gironella was more ambitious in his controversial epic trilogy on the Civil War: Los cipreses creen en Dios (1953; The Cypresses Believe in God), Un milln de muertos (1961; The Million Dead); and Ha estallado la paz (1966; Peace After War). Miguel Delibes conveyed a critical concern for a society whose natural values are under constant threat. Greater technical advance and thematic originality are evinced in his Cinco horas con Mario (1966; Five Hours with Mario), a powerful novel constructed almost entirely with interior monologue. During the 1950s a starker form of Social Realism became the dominant manner in the work of a group of competent, committed novelists (Ana Mara Matute, Rafael Snchez Ferlosio, the brothers Juan and Luis Goytisolo, Jess Fernndez Santos, Juan Garca Hortelano, Carmen Martn Gaite, Ignacio Aldecoa, Jess Lpez Pacheco, Daniel Sueiro, and Elena Quiroga). The finest novel produced by a member of this group was Ferlosio's El Jarama (1956; The Jarama; Eng. trans., The One Day of the Week), in which the monotonous existence of urban youth is vividly re-created in the aimless conversations of the characters. By the 1960s, this form of direct, unadventurous Realism was a spent force. Luis Martn-Santos was the first to break the mold with his epoch-making Tiempo de silencio (1962; Time of Silence), in which the familiar topic of life in post-Civil War Spain was subjected to the elaboration of conscious artistry. Juan Goytisolo, whose early novels had been firmly anchored in Social Realism, ventured into increased introspectiveness and revolutionary experimentation with structure and language in his Seas de identidad (1966; Marks of Identity). In the same line of promising innovation is Juan Benet Goita, whose Volvers a Regin (1967; You Will Return to Regin) combined density of form with myth and allegory. Catalan literature The Catalan language is a branch of peninsular rather than of southern Gallo-Romance. It shows, nonetheless, many traces of kinship with Provenal, and the literature in its origins used the Occitan language (langue d'oc, the dialects of Old French spoken south of the Loire River) and the poetic forms cultivated by troubadours north of the Pyrenees. Medieval period Poetry The early Catalan troubadours Guillem de Bergad, Hug de Mataplana, Guillem de Cervera, and others were genuine Provenal poets. About 100 years later, in the late 14th century, Provenal influence apparently lessened, and poets turned to northern France for inspiration. They took over the long French narratives on romance themes such as the Arthurian cycle and used the noves rimades metre, a sequence of octosyllabic rhymed couplets. Several poets working in this tradition carried the new interest in the langue d'ol (the dialects of Old French spoken north of the Loire) to the extent of incorporating passages of French poetry in their poems. The great period of Catalan poetry was the 15th century, after John I of Aragon had established in 1393 a poetic academy in Barcelona on the model of the academy in Toulouse with jocs florals (floral games, or poetry congresses), including literary competitions. This royal encouragement continued under Martin I and Ferdinand I and helped to emancipate the literary style from foreign influences. As the century advanced, Valencia emerged as a new focus of literary activity: a school of poetry developing there was noted for its characteristic use of eight-line decasyllabic verses with crossed, or chained, rhymes and final four-line refrain, illustrating a turning away from French models and a new inspiration from Italy. The cants d'amor and cants de mort (songs of love and songs of death) by Ausis March contained the finest verses ever written in Catalan, exerted influence in 16th-century Castile, and continue to influence modern Catalan poets. Jaume Roig's Lo spill o llibre de les dones (c. 1460; The Mirror or Book of Women) was very differenta caustic satire on woman, written in more than 16,000 four-syllable lines, portraying contemporary Valencian life vividly. Johan Roi de Corella, a Valencian lyricist, was perhaps the best representative of the Renaissance. After the union of Aragon with Castile, the Castilian language predominated throughout Spain, spelling a long eclipse of Catalan literature. Nevertheless, Juan Boscn Almogver inaugurated a new Castilian school of poetry, and Castilians regard him as a landmark in the history of their Renaissance; by the time Boscn's works were published (1543), Catalan poetry had been dead for 50 years. Galician literature Medieval poetry Galician is closely related to Portuguese, and there is no separating the two languages in the three great repositories of medieval verse, the 14th-century Cancioneiro (Songbook) da Ajuda, Cancioneiro da Vaticana, and Colocci-Brancuti. Indigenous lyric origins were overlaid by Provenal influence, and a dominance of emotion over thought identified Galician with subjective lyricism, so that for over a century Castilian poets made it their medium for lyrics. Of 116 names in the Cancioneiro da Vaticana, 75 have been tentatively identified as Galician; none achieved particular individuality. Macas El Enamorado (flourished mid-14th century) was the last Galician troubadour; Galicians thereafter wrote in Castilian, and, though there were echoes of their tradition, the Renaissance and Castilian political hegemony finally ended Galician literature until the 19th century. The modern revival The Romantic movement, like the Peninsular War, revived local feeling and interest in things Galician but not in the language. The xogos froraes (floral games, or poetry congresses; an equivalent of Catalan and Provenal jocs florals) of 1861, with the first dictionary (1863) and first grammar (1864) of Galician, marked a change. Francisco An y Paz was the first notable poet in the resurrected idiom, his most stirring notes being love of country and of freedom. Rosala de Castro, the greatest name in Galician literature, identified herself with the spirit and people of the Galician countryside in Cantares gallegos (1863; Galician Songs); her Follas novas (1880; New Leaves), introspective to the verge of despair, reflected deep personal sorrows. Eduardo Pondal y Abente, a bard of a dimly sensed heroic past, was concerned with nature and Celtic mythology. Valentn Lamas Carvajal has been remembered as the voice of the peasant. Prose showed no comparable achievement. Aurelio Ribalta, Manuel Lugrs Freire, and Heraclio Prez Placer wrote short stories but were overshadowed by novelists of statureEmilia, condesa de Pardo Bazn, and Rosala de Castrowho chose to write for a larger public in Castilian. The 20th century has produced, especially since 1920, a continuing abundance of Galician poets, not yet sufficiently differentiated, who underline the identification of Galician literature with a markedly poetic regional temperament and language.
Britannica English vocabulary. Английский словарь Британика. 2012