La modernidad de los Versos libres de José Martí

Document Type



Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)



First Advisor's Name

Leonel de la Cuesta

First Advisor's Committee Title

Committee Chair

Second Advisor's Name

Santiago Juan-Navarro

Third Advisor's Name

Reinaldo Sanchez

Date of Defense



The purpose of this dissertation is to analyze the collection of poems Versos libres written by José Martí, as a cycle of literary expression closely connected with the origins and development of the modernist movement, as well as to the emergence of what has been later termed the modernism of Hispanic-American literature.

The poetics of Versos libres is based on the liberating function attributed to them by their author, who was determined to reach with this cycle a level of expression where literary modernism and radical Americanism would be fully integrated, in order to enrich the communicative capabilities of poetic language, making it penetrate deep and complex realities: Man's conscience, psyche and creative effort, nature and history.

This study of the Versos libres as a cycle, allows us to characterize the contribution of such a work to Hispanic-American poetry as a result of a literary praxis whose tone makes Versos libres a piece of work that, in its best-realized moments, surpasses the limits of the turn-of-the-century Hispanic-American poetry; thus laying a bridge towards modem poetry in the Spanish language.



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