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date: 17 September 2019

Abstract and Keywords

Latinx writers cross boundaries between languages, renovating the experience both of language and of literature. This article takes up the invitations of several creative/disruptive artists: Víctor Hernández Cruz, Guillermo Cabrera Infante, Ana Lydia Vega, William Carlos Williams, Gloria Anzaldúa, and Tino Villanueva. The analysis shows how bilingualism transforms rhetorical figures and affective structures, arguing that metonymy—understood as contiguity and as desire—is a predominant figure of bilingualism: a figure of almost arbitrary coincidence, an unintended intimacy that writers exploit. Through rhetorical and affective gestures, bilingualism alters genre conventions and opens a new space for aesthetic pleasure and political discussion, which requires and forms an alert audience with new ways of reading. The essay traces the visions of future (and its fantasies) and of past (and its memories) from the perspective of bilingualism, showing how operating between languages allows for new ways of constructing knowledge.

Keywords: affect theory, aesthetics, bilingualism, Latino studies, Latinx literature, metonymy, rhetoric

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