English Language and Literature ETDs

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The purpose of this investigation of the work of Gabriela Mistral as seen by her American critics, and of the critics as they are revealed by their standards, has been to offer some insight into the problem of critical biases--an area which has become a burgeoning field of interest in the United States of the mid-twentieth century. In order to dramatize the similarities and disparities of critical viewpoint, the area of South American literature, as little known to North American readers and writers as is any literature in the Western tradition, was chosen, and from it, the production of a woman poet, unheard of here except to a few specialists before the bestowal of the Nobel Prize for literature in 1945. Because of the relative obscurity of this literature and its particular contributor, the critical appraisal of the Americans here studied seems to be fresher, more original, less influenced by the received opinion of colleagues and mentors or by rivalry among contemporaries. It does, therefore, provide a more unsullied and less hackneyed body of critical writing to be sifted through in search of the reasons for a critic's attitudes and judgments.

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First Committee Member (Chair)

Willis Dana Jacobs

Second Committee Member

Ernest Warnock Tedlock Jr

Third Committee Member

Raymond Ralph MacCurdy



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