Skip to content. | Skip to navigation

Personal tools

Navigation

After Exile

Writing the Latin American Diaspora

1999
Author:

Amy K. Kaminsky

Book Default Image

Considers the effect of exile on contemporary South American writers.

Can an exiled writer ever really go home again? What of the writers of Argentina, Uruguay, and Chile, whose status as exiles in the 1970s and 1980s largely defined their identities and subject matter? After Exile takes a critical look at these writers, at the effect of exile on their work, and at the complexities of homecoming-a fraught possibility when democracy was restored to each of these countries.

Kaminsky's work is engaging and engaged; it has both global implications and a specific focus, and her readings of the fictional texts she discusses in the context of her argument are fluid and impeccably lucid.

Debra A. Castillo, author of Easy Women: Sex and Gender in Modern Mexican Fiction

Can an exiled writer ever really go home again? What of the writers of Argentina, Uruguay, and Chile, whose status as exiles in the 1970s and 1980s largely defined their identities and subject matter? After Exile takes a critical look at these writers, at the effect of exile on their work, and at the complexities of homecoming-a fraught possibility when democracy was restored to each of these countries.

Both famous and lesser known writers people this story of dislocation and relocation, among them José Donoso, Ana Vásquez, Luisa Valenzuela, Cristina Peri Rossi, and Mario Benedetti. In their work-and their predicament-Amy K. Kaminsky considers the representation of both physical uprootedness and national identity-or, more precisely, an individual’s identity as a national subject.

Here, national identity is not the double abstraction of “identity” and “nation,” but a person’s sense of being and belonging that derives from memories and experiences of a particular place. Because language is crucial to this connection, Kaminsky explores the linguistic isolation, miscommunication, and multilingualism that mark late-exile and post-exile writing. She also examines how gender difference affects the themes and rhetoric of exile-how, for example, traditional projections of femininity, such as the idea of a “mother country,” are used to allegorize exile.

Describing exile as a process (sometimes of acculturation, sometimes of alienation), this work fosters a new understanding of how writers live and work in relation to space and place, particularly the place called home.

ISBN 0-8166-3147-6 Cloth £00.00 $42.95xx
ISBN 0-8166-3148-4 Paper £00.00 $16.95x
208 Pages 5 7/8 x 9 June
Translation inquiries: University of Minnesota Press

Book Default Image

Amy K. Kaminsky is professor of women’s studies and a member of the graduate faculty in Spanish and Portuguese at the University of Minnesota. She is the author of Reading the Body Politic (1992) and editor of Water Lilies (1995), both published by the University of Minnesota Press.

Book Default Image

Kaminsky's work is engaging and engaged; it has both global implications and a specific focus, and her readings of the fictional texts she discusses in the context of her argument are fluid and impeccably lucid.

Debra A. Castillo, author of Easy Women: Sex and Gender in Modern Mexican Fiction

Amy Kaminsky is a rare talent. This study of exile and gender is much needed in Latin American studies.

Rosemary G. Feal, author of Painting on the Page : Interartistic Approaches to Modern Hispanic Texts

Captivating from the outset, Kaminsky’s book takes a critical look at the effects of exile on the literary production of some famous and lesser-known Southern Cone writers. What makes this text a valuable resource for scholars is not so much the number of writers and critics mentioned as the fact that it provides accessibility to Kaminsky’s reflections on literary creation, modern culture, politics, and her belief that the end of exile is rich with a sense of loss and a desire for what is elsewhere.

MultiCultural Review

Kaminsky’s work is certainly engaging. True to the author’s intentions, the text provides a valuable analysis of the writing of exiles, from exile to diaspora, and will definitely contribute to broadening the understanding of Latin American writers to an English-speaking public.

Rocky Mountain Review