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Transatlantic StudiesLatin America, Iberia, and Africa$
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Cecilia Enjuto-Rangel, Sebastiaan Faber, Pedro García-Caro, and Robert Patrick Newcomb

Print publication date: 2019

Print ISBN-13: 9781789620252

Published to Liverpool Scholarship Online: May 2020

DOI: 10.3828/liverpool/9781789620252.001.0001

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Nicolás Guillén and Poesia Negra de Expressão Portuguesa (1953)

Nicolás Guillén and Poesia Negra de Expressão Portuguesa (1953)

(p.386) Chapter Thirty-One Nicolás Guillén and Poesia Negra de Expressão Portuguesa (1953)
Transatlantic Studies

Lanie Millar

Liverpool University Press

The 1953 poetry notebook Poesia negra de expressão portuguesa [Black Poetry of Portuguese Expression] was first work that brought together negritude poetry from across the Lusophone African world. Edited by Angolan intellectual Mário Pinto de Andrade and Sao Tomean poet Francisco Tenreiro, the short collection declares itself an anti-colonial intervention into the negritude movements underway in the Francophone world since the 1930s. Little has been made, however, of the notebook’s dedication to Cuban poet Nicolás Guillén or the inclusion of Guillén’s poem “Son Número 6” [Son Number 6] in the collection. This article argues that the juxtaposition of Guillén’s “Son No. 6” with the Lusophone poems consolidates an alternative transatlanticism that emphasizes Guillén as a black poet, rather than themes of racial and cultural mixing, and thus shifts the circuits of collaboration away from francophone negritude's colony-metropole axis to the South. Poetic techniques such as call-and-response and the socially-embedded, metonymic construction of blackness shared among Guillén and Lusophone poets Agostinho Neto, Noémia de Sousa, and António Jacinto show how the notebook establishes the origins of both negritude poetry and negritude identity in the trans-Atlantic poetic conversation itself.

Keywords:   negritude, Nicolás Guillén, Lusophone Africa, Agostinho Neto, António Jacinto, Noémia de Sousa, blackness in poetry

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