Academic journal article Chicago Review

Translator's Note

Academic journal article Chicago Review

Translator's Note

Article excerpt

The Infrarealists share a certain set of cultural, political, and literary circumstances that inform their work, as detailed by Rubén Medina in the introduction to this section. Their work in and of itself, however, is highly heterogeneous. One way to consider this loosely unified heterogeneity is to think of the Infrarealists as carrying out a critical rereading of the historical avant-garde through their writing. The literary influences they valued are placed at the fore in the manifestos written by Roberto Bolaño and Mario Santiago Papasquiaro that open this section. For example, the title of Bolaño's manifesto "Leave It All, Once More," as Medina points out, is a nod to a 1922 text in which André Breton called for readers to leave Dada behind (as well as their wives and mistresses). In his own manifesto, Santiago Papasquiaro includes a long list of movements and writers that he felt directly influenced him. Conserving the diversity of their styles and approaches is important to Santiago Papasquiaro not only because of the variety of influences which can be found in their work, but also because of what we might call the Bolaño phenomenon. Bolaño's figure looms large over the members of the group: they are inextricably linked to his work thanks to their representation as the "Visceral Realists" in his novel The Savage Detectives (1998). With Bolaño's subsequent rise in international fame, his work has been widely translated, read, and interpreted. The work of the other Infrarealists has not.

However, there has been some pioneering work done on translating Santiago Papasquiaro's work into English, notably and laudably by Cole Heinowitz, whose afterword concludes this section. She has published two important translated volumes to date: the chapbook collection Beauty Is Our Spiritual Guernica (Commune Editions, 2015), which includes her version of Santiago Papasquiaro's "Infrarealist Manifesto" along with the daunting long poem "Already Far from the Road" and, together with Alexis Graman, the even longer and more daunting Advice from 1 Disciple of Marx to 1 Heidegger Fanatic (Wave Books, 2013). …

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