Alfonsina Storni

Alfonsina Storni

Alfonsina Storni (May 29 1892October 25 1938) was one of the most important Ibero-American poets of the postmodernism movement.


Alfonsina was born in Sala Capriasca, Switzerland to an Argentine beer industrialist living in Switzerland for a few years. There, Alfonsina learned to speak Italian. After the family's business had failed, it opened a tavern in the city of Rosario, Argentina, where Alfonsina worked at a variety of chores.

In 1907, she joined a traveling theatre company which took her around the country. With them she performed in Henrik Ibsen's "Spectres," Benito Pérez Galdós's "La loca de la casa," and Florencio Sánchez's "Los muertos".

Back in Rosario she finished her studies as a rural primary teacher, and also started working for "Mundo Rosarino" and "Monos y Monadas" local magazines, as well as "Mundo Argentino".

In 1911 she moved to Buenos Aires, seeking the anonymity of a big city. The following year her son Alejandro was born, the illegitimate child of a journalist in Cornoda.

In spite of her economic difficulties, she published "La inquietud del rosal " in 1916, and later started writing for "Caras y Caretas" magazine while working as a cashier in a shop.

Alfonsina soon became acquainted with other writers such as José Enrique Rodó and Amado Nervo, and established friendships with José Ingenieros and Manuel Ugarte.

Her economic situation improved, which allowed her to travel to Montevideo, Uruguay. There she met the poet Juana de Ibarbourou, as well as Horacio Quiroga, with whom she would become great friends. Her 1920 book "Languidez" received the first Municipal Poetry Prize and the second National Literature Prize.

She taught literature at the "Escuela Normal de Lenguas Vivas", and she published "Ocre". Her style now showed more realism than before, and a strongly feminist theme. Solitude and marginality began to affect her health, and worsening emotional problems forced her to leave her job as teacher.

Trips to Europe changed her writing by helping her to lose her formal models, and reach a more dramatic lyricism, loaded with an erotic vehemence unknown in those days, and new feminists thoughts in "Mundo de siete pozos" (1934) and "Mascarilla y trébol" (1938).

A year and a half after her friend Quiroga committed suicide in 1937, and haunted by solitude and breast cancer, Storni sent her last poem, "Voy a dormir" ("I'm going to sleep") to La Nación newspaper. The following day she committed suicide, by walking into the sea at the "La Perla" beach in Mar del Plata, Argentina.

Her death inspired Ariel Ramírez and Félix Luna to compose the song "Alfonsina y el Mar" ("Alfonsina and the sea"), which has been interpreted by Mercedes Sosa, Nana Mouskouri, Mocedades, Andrés Calamaro and many others.

Also, fifty years after her death, she inspired the Latin American artist Aquino to incorporate her image into many of his paintings.

Storni once referred to men as "el enemigo," "the enemy." Much of Storni's work focuses on what she sees as the repression of women by men. This often takes the form of personal insults directed at men in general. For example, in "Tú me quieres blanca" (You want me white), she wrote, "Dios te lo perdone," "God forgive you," even though the poem is about male hypocrisy regarding the chastity of women.


* 1916 "La inquietud del rosal" ("The Restlessness of the Rose")
* 1918 "El dulce daño" ("Sweet injury")
* 1919 "Irremediablemente" ("Irremediably")
* 1920 "Languidez" ("Languidness")
* 1925 "Ocre" ("Ochre")
* 1926 "Poemas de amor" ("Love poems")
* 1927 "El amo del mundo: comedia en tres actos" - play ("Master of the world: a comedy in three acts")
* 1932 "Dos farsas pirotécnicas" - play ("Two pyrotechnic farces")
* 1934 "Mundo de siete pozos" ("World of seven wells")
* 1938 "Mascarilla y trébol" ("Mask and trefoil")

Post mortem:
* 1938 "Antología poética" ("Poetic anthology")
* 1968 "Poesías completas" ("Complete poetical works")
* 1998 "Nosotras y la piel: selección de ensayos" ("We (women) and the skin: selected essays")

External links

* [ Alfonsina at the Cervantes Virtual Library] (Spanish)
* [ Alfonsina by Agriela Deccicco] (Spanish)
* [ Alfonsina] , a 1957 film starring Amelia Bence (Spanish)

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  • Alfonsina y el mar — es una zamba compuesta por los argentinos Ariel Ramírez y Félix Luna, publicada por primera vez en el disco de Mercedes Sosa Mujeres argentinas, de 1969. La canción es un homenaje a la poetisa de la misma nacionalidad Alfonsina Storni, que se… …   Wikipedia Español

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  • Storni, Alfonsina — ▪ Argentine writer born May 29, 1892, Sala Capriasca, Switzerland died October 25, 1938, Mar del Plata, Argentina       one of the foremost poets in Latin American literature.       Storni s family immigrated to Argentina in 1896. Forced to earn… …   Universalium

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