“Indigenismo and Futurism in Latin America: José Carlos Mariátegui and the Peruvian Avant-Garde.”
Latin American Avant-Garde, Peruvian Literature, Poetry, Indigenismo, Nativism, José Carlos Mariátegui, Amauta, Nguillatún, Boletín Titikaka
Abstract: This essay explores the encounter between Latin American indige- nismo and avant-garde movements such as Futurism through an analysis of avant-garde literary magazines and Peruvian avant-garde poetry with Futurist tendencies. The first section begins with the Amauta magazine (1926–30), edited by the Peruvian Marxist José Carlos Mariátegui (1894–1930), who promoted an indigenous agenda while also censuring and applauding Futurism. The second section briefly investigates the Chilean literary journal Nguillatún (1924), whose founding manifesto toyed with Futurist principles while simultaneously turning to Chile’s indigenous culture. In addition, I analyse Gamaliel Churata’s Boletín Titikaka (1926–29), which promoted linguistic experimentation with indigenous languages in the form of parole in libertà as a way to reclaim Andean indigenous identity. In the final section, I analyse some Peruvian avant-garde poets who used indigenous, nativist and Futurist themes (especially transportation and technology). While all of these projects applauded the return of the ‘autochtone’ within the ‘national’ as a way to promote a ‘New-World avant-garde’, Futurist, indigenous and nativist themes were not always a compatible mixture. The avant-garde primarily promoted a spirit of innovation in the Peruvian Andes, and also provided a platform from which to promote indigeneity. I argue that Latin American indigenismo allowed for Futurist and avant-garde aesthetics to permeate the social sphere by insisting on social concerns while promoting an international artistic programme.
“Indigenismo and Futurism in Latin America: José Carlos Mariátegui and the Peruvian Avant-Garde.” International Yearbook of Futurism Studies: Special Issue: Futurism in Latin America. Vol. 7 (2017).