Hemispheric Queer/Cuir and Feminist Writings: Translating (Dis)encounters

  • Cynthia Francica Universidad Adolfo Ibáñez
Palabras clave: Queer/feminism/translation studies/literary community/independent presses


Probing the forms of queer/cuir and feminist intimacies which ground hemispheric networks, this article sets out to investigate the ephemeral modes of togetherness that connect distant, yet tightly related, cultural scenes across the Americas. To this end, it focuses on the exchanges between two Argentine and U.S. queer/feminist independent publishing projects: Buenos Aires press and art gallery ‘Belleza y Felicidad’ (ByF, 1999-2007) and ‘Belladonna*’ (BD, 1999-today), a U.S. reading series and press which, like ByF, is run by women. In particular, this article examines the publication of a 2005 Belladonna* anthology of ByF works in translation, Belleza y Felicidad . This work functions both through its ephemeral chapbook format and its staging of the multiple modes of (dis)encounters enabled by the politics of translation, as a trace, register or informal archive of a queer/cuir hemispheric conversation.

Translation operates here as fertile ground to think through feminist/queer bonds and alternative models of community formation across spatial, geo-political and linguistic distances. In the BD/ByF exchange, the practice of linguistic and format/material translation allows for an exploration of the political and aesthetic value of opacity and illegibility embraced by these writers. In this sense, and in order to probe what these type of hemispheric conversations feel like, this article centers on the deployment of childishness and naïveté as a cuir/feminist strategy of aesthetic and political positioning on the part of Argentine writers vis a vis the perceived cultural dominance of their North American counterpart.

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