Alfonsina Storni Criticism - Essay

Sidonia Carmen Rosenbaum (essay date 1945)

(Poetry Criticism)

SOURCE: Modern Women Poets of Spanish America, New York: Hispanic Institute, 1945, pp. 205–27.

[In the following excerpt, Rosenbaum discusses themes concerning the individual woman in the modern city in Storni's poetry. Rosenbaum concludes that Storni's poetic voice “is not feminist but feminine in the extreme.”]

Ni cupo en otro cuerpo así pequeño
Un alma humana de mayor terneza …

With the publication, in 1916, of her book La inquietud del rosal, Alfonsina Storni was to initiate in her country the fruitful period of modern feminine poetry. …

Storni's lyre, far from being monochord—as are those of so...

(The entire section is 8668 words.)

Gabriele Von Munk Benton (essay date 1950)

(Poetry Criticism)

SOURCE: “Recurring Themes in Alfonsina Storni's Poetry,” in Hispania, Vol. 33, No. 2, 1950, pp. 151–53.

[In the following essay, Benton discusses Storni's collection Antología poética in terms of thematic concerns throughout her poetry.]

In “Palabras prologales” to her Antología poética Alfonsina Storni states as her own preference for her poetry Ocre, a book of verse published at a time when the poet herself calls her previous poetry of the years 1916–1920 overloaded with romantic sweetness. The poems of Ocre and of the later collections she has chosen for the anthology as characteristic and best appear to be partly a record...

(The entire section is 1405 words.)

Edna Lue Furness (essay date Winter 1957)

(Poetry Criticism)

SOURCE: “A Woman and the World,” in Western Humanities Review, Vol. 11, No. 1, Winter, 1957, pp. 96–8.

[In the following essay, Furness analyses central themes in the poems of World of Seven Wells.]

In the feminine literature of twentieth-century Spanish America, some authors follow true feminine tradition by writing of subjects which have always had high priority with women, such as love, motherhood, and religion. Others have stepped out of their traditional role, and have written of social, political, and urban problems. To the latter group belongs Alfonsina Storni, who reportedly initiated in Argentina a new school of literature and “who won for...

(The entire section is 901 words.)

Rachel Phillips (essay date 1975)

(Poetry Criticism)

SOURCE: Alfonsina Storni: From Poetess to Poet, London: Tamesis Books, Ltd., 1975, pp. 29–44, and 101–20.

[In the following excerpt, Phillips analyses formal elements of Storni's poetry on themes of love and death.]


Though El dulce daño, Irremediablemente and Languidez contain among them almost half of Storni's published poetry, there is a certain justification for treating them in this study as sub-divisions of one chapter. They appeared in the space of a very few years: in 1918, El dulce daño; a year later, Irremediablemente; and in 1920, Languidez, along with the second edition of...

(The entire section is 17022 words.)

Janice Geasler Titiev (essay date 1976)

(Poetry Criticism)

SOURCE: “Alfonsina Storni's Mundo de siete pozos: Form, Freedom, and Fantasy,” in Kentucky Romance Quarterly, Vol. XXII, No. 2, 1976, pp. 185–97.

[In the following essay, Titiev argues that, in Mundo de siete pozos, form take precedence over content, concluding that the collection is unified by formal rather than thematic elements of each poem.]

It seems safe to assume that by the time Alfonsina Storni published Mundo de siete pozos, in 1934, form had in general become more important to her than content. Her first four collections (1916–1920) contained a variety of structures, and all but the initial book had a principal theme, love. Love...

(The entire section is 5284 words.)

Sonia Jones (essay date 1979)

(Poetry Criticism)

SOURCE: Alfonsina Storni, Boston: Twayne, 1979, pp. 51–85.

[In the following essay, Jones examines Storni's poetry in terms of literary modernism.]

Any attempt to classify Alfonsina's poetry by applying to it the usual literary labels is bound to fail. This may very well be true of all poetry, but suffice it to say that, in Alfonsina's case, she never consciously allied herself with any particular literary philosophy. She was interested in studying the goals put forward by the various artistic schools both inside and outside Argentina, but her approach was eclectic. Her early work reflects a predominantly Romantic tone, with its autobiographical elements, its lyrical...

(The entire section is 13937 words.)

Janice Geasler Titiev (essay date Winter 1980)

(Poetry Criticism)

SOURCE: “Alfonsina Storni's Poemas de amor: Submissive Woman, Liberated Poet,” in Journal of Spanish Studies, Vol. 8, No. 3, Winter, 1980, pp. 279–92.

[In the following essay, Titiev discusses Poemas de amor, Storni's volume of prose poems. Although generally overlooked by critics, Titiev argues, this volume represents a unique development in Storni's use of form.]

In 1926 Alfonsina Storni published a brief volume of sixty-seven prose poems, Poemas de amor. Critics usually ignore this book; it does not always appear in lists of the author's works and is not included in collections of her “complete” poetry. Poemas de amor is not one...

(The entire section is 5107 words.)

Janice Geasler Titiev (essay date September 1985)

(Poetry Criticism)

SOURCE: “The Poetry of Dying in Alfonsina Storni's Last Book,” Hispania, Vol. 68, September, 1985, pp. 467–73.

[In the following essay, Titiev examines the theme of death in the poems of Mascarilla y trébol in the context of Storni's experience with terminal cancer.]

It is regrettable that anthologized selections of Alfonsina Storni's poetry usually do not include poems from Mascarilla y trébol (1938), her eighth and last book of poetry, since this collection contains some of her best work and perhaps her most original approach to form. It is also understandable because the content of the poems is depressing and occasionally confusing. In these...

(The entire section is 5255 words.)

María Rosa Olivera-Williams (essay date 1989)

(Poetry Criticism)

SOURCE: “Feminine Voices in Exile” in Engendering the Word: Feminist Essays in Psychosexual Poetics, Temma F. Berg, editor, Chicago: University of Illinois Press, 1989, pp. 160–66.

[In the following excerpt, Olivera-Williams discusses two of Storni's poems as feminist statements.]

By the time that Argentine Alfonsina Storni published her first book of poetry in 1916, two years after Agustini's death, other Spanish American women had followed Agustini's path and were being recognized in literary circles. Among them were the Uruguayan Juana de Ibarbourou, the Chilean Gabriela Mistral, recipient of the Nobel Prize in Literature in 1945, and the Cuban, Dulce María...

(The entire section is 2173 words.)

Janice Geasler Titiev (essay date 1990)

(Poetry Criticism)

SOURCE: “Women's Language in Two Poems by Alfonsina Storni,” in Monographic Review, Vol. VI, 1990, pp. 232–44.

[In the following essay, Titiev discusses two poems by Storni that explore feminist themes focused on the female body.]

As Patricia Yaeger recently pointed out, the French feminist critics who call for a new woman's language make the mistake of “omitting the practices of real, historical women from their analysis of women's writing” and thereby “remain blind to what has actually happened in women's texts” (20). She undertakes a definition of “a countertradition within women's writing, a tradition that involves the reinvention and reclamation of...

(The entire section is 5312 words.)

Evelyn Fishburn (essay date 1991)

(Poetry Criticism)

SOURCE: “Alfonsina Storni: A Feminist Reading of Her Poetry,” in Feminist Readings on Spanish and Latin-American Literature, L. P. Condé and S. M. Hart, editors, Lewiston, NY: Edwin Mellen Press, 1991, pp. 121–30.

[In the following essay, Fishburn discusses Storni's poetry in terms of “the nature of her feminism” by “focusing on different aspects of femininity in her poetic output.”]

Alfonsina Storni enjoys the well earned acclaim of being one of the first and foremost Latin-American feminist poets. Thus, Beatriz Sarlo places her at the head of a list of women que abrieron camino' to whom she dedicates her book El imperio de los sentimientos (next...

(The entire section is 4076 words.)

Gwen Kirkpatrick (essay date 1995)

(Poetry Criticism)

SOURCE: “The Creation of Alfonsina Storni,” in A Dream of Light and Shadow: Portraits of Latin American Women Writers, Marjorie Agosén, editor, Albuquerque: University of New Mexico Press, 1995, pp. 95–117.

[In the following essay, Kirkpatrick discusses Storni's essays in the context of her literary career and the status of women in Argentina during the early twentieth century.]

The Argentine poet Alfonsina Storni (1892–1938) has become a legend in Latin American literary history.1 Socially defiant, professionally ambitious, gifted with talent and early fame, she was nonetheless limited by her social origins, her training, and restrictions for women...

(The entire section is 8239 words.)

Janice G. Titiev (essay date 1997)

(Poetry Criticism)

SOURCE: “Alfonsina Storni: In and Out of the Canon,” Monographic Review, Vol. XIII, 1997, pp. 310–18.

[In the following essay, Titiev argues that, although several of Storni's poems are now included in the “canon” of Latin-American literature commonly studied in classrooms, these selections still represent only a narrow selection of Storni's range of thematic concerns.]

We tend to refer to “the canon” as though there were only one, although we know that there are, in fact, many different canons. In a discussion based for the most part on the study of English and U.S. literature in English-speaking North America, Lillian Robinson wrote about “the...

(The entire section is 3156 words.)