The Age of Revolutions through the Prism of Art. On the History of Creation of the Novel “The Rite of Spring” by Alejo Carpentier
- УДК / UDK: 82(091)
- Author: Elena Ogneva
- About the author:
Elena Ogneva (PhD, leading research fellow; Lomonosov Moscow State University, Russia)
The article is devoted to the most “politically engaged” and the most controversial novel by the prominent Cuban writer. It took Alejo Carpentier eighteen years to create a work that appeared at the intersection of two literary coordinates: “a new Latin American novel” and “a novel of Cuban revolution”. In this regard the author studies both history and prehistory of “a novel of Cuban Revolution”, and observes the main stages of its development. In the course of work on The Rite of Spring (1978), three different variants of the novel’s plan (1959, Silver Guests, and Russian from Baracoa) were reinterpreted by the writer, the materials of Carpentier's early essays and reportages were used, as well as the memories of his mother, a Russian emigrant. The article analyses the artistic peculiarities of this novel by Carpentier (its genre identity, specific intertextuality, various levels of reading). The fact is that Carpentier, having his characters live through the twentieth century, from the Russian revolution to the Cuban revolution, creates a special perspective and perception of reality for them. His focus is laid upon history, comprehended through the prism of art. Justifying the expectations of some literary critics and disappointing others, The Rite of Spring remains open for interpretation up to the present day.
- Keywords: Alejo Carpentier, The Rite of Spring, the New Latin American novel, a novel of Cuban Revolution, Spanish American Literature.
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