BOOK REVIEWS The Dialectics of Exile: Nation, Time, Language, and Space in Hispanic Literatures. By Sophia A. McClennen. West Lafayette: Purdue University Press, 2004. xi + 241 pp. $32.95. Exile occupies a central place among the defining features of Hispanic literatures. Numerous writers from Spanish America, and many from Spain, were forced to live and write outside their homelands, incorporating reflections on this situation into their writing. It is surprising, however, not to find a substantial body of critical attention devoted to this matter. Sophia McClennen's book responds to a pressing need to theorize an issue that involves many questions concerning notions of power, identity, and memory--all of them pivotal to the study of Hispanic culture on both sides of the Atlantic. By adopting a comparative perspective, she also goes beyond the context of the Spanish-speaking world to reflect on the concept of "exile" and its problematic appropriation by post-modern critical theory. Her main concern in this respect is how a metaphoric use of the concept tends to ignore the pain and difficulties of the actual experience of exile, by focusing on how it liberates subjects from the constraints of nationhood. McClennen stresses the need to localize and
Comparative Literature Studies – Penn State University Press
Published: Dec 6, 2007
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