The Ocho Poetas Mexicanos and the marginalisation of Catholic authors in post-revolutionary Mexico

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    Abstract

    The group known as the Ocho Poetas Mexicanos were marginalised in post-revolutionary literary circles and remain largely forgotten by literary history because they were dismissed as Catholic authors by a literary establishment which favoured nation-building literature at a time when Catholicism was excluded from official constructions of nationhood. This article draws attention to the significant contribution made by group members to contemporary cultural life and re-evaluates the work they published in the 1955 anthology which announced their arrival onto the literary scene. An analysis of this collection demonstrates that there was scant justification for labelling the group as Catholic poets and suggests that they are best understood with reference to the “universal” strand of Mexican literature and as heirs to groups such as the Contemporáneos. The treatment of the Ocho Poetas provides important evidence of the way in which Catholic authors were marginalised in mid-twentieth century Mexico, even if they did not express religious beliefs in their work, and draws attention to the non-literary criteria which can come into play when evaluating texts.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)89-106
    Number of pages18
    JournalJournal of Iberian and Latin American Studies
    Volume21
    Issue number2
    DOIs
    Publication statusPublished - 2015

    Keywords

    • Mexican poetry
    • Religion and literature
    • Ocho Poetas
    • Dolores Castro
    • Rosario Castellanos

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