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By Candelas Gala (auth.)

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Example text

Text II presents the poet’s head rolling down Niagara Falls. Is it because he places his hand on Napoleon’s head in a gesture that seems to defy the western order the emperor represents? That’s why his writing will seek freedom from all kinds of restraints, whether they are psychological, religious, or political. 23 He also admits that negation is intertwined in his fingers and that he can’t free himself from it; it is intrinsic to his writing as it stands in opposition to conventions and norms.

In surrealism, convulsion refers to the overturning of the conventions, disguises, and masks one is forced to adopt in order to function in society, reach personal and creative authenticity, and reach the surreality level, where it will be possible to overcome contradictions. Convulsive beauty allows one to submerge in jouissance, an experience that paradoxically involves a foretaste of death;5 it responds to Breton’s maxim that “beauty will be convulsive or will not be” (at the end of his novel Nadja), revised by Max Ernst, to “identity will be convulsive or will not be” (qtd.

Excessive sentimentality and idealism in romantic values is another target for this poet’s strategy of reversal. In “Por qué no fui Singapore” [Why I Was Not Singapore] (153-156), the search is set off by a “papelito rosa” [little pink note] that gets hooked to the poet’s fishing rod. The message on the note says that he is the chosen one to be Singapore, and is destined to unite with María Luisa, the epitome of the ideal woman. The sentimentality in the pink color and in the diminutive “papelito” [little note] ridicule the tragic tone of romantic missives, while the obsessive repetition of the word “Singapore” creates a hypnotic effect with clear references to a drug-induced state.

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