Poetry. Latino/Latino Studies. Bilingual Edition. Translated from the Spanish by Molly Weigel. Is it "shocking" that Sergio and Pablo Shoklender, two teenage sons of privilege in 80s Argentina, should murder their parents, stuff them in a car trunk, and ride off in different directions on horseback? Or is it consistent with the violence with which capitalism and privilege direct and protect themselves, through oppression, theft and the dirtiest of wars? As the late Argentine poet Jorge Santiago Perednik has written, "Terror settles in people and affects them in unforeseen ways; in the case of Argentine poets, whatever they wrote about, even if they didn't intend to, they wrote about terror." His long poem, "The Shock of the Lenders," is a tour de force in the truest sense of that term, going blow for blow, spectacle for spectacle with the implacable, immoral Power that maimed and split society during Argentina's Dirty War and continues to make and split the world today. Perednik meets language at the end of its tether and makes it speak the unspeakable.
Jorge Santiago Perednik (1952-2011) was born in Buenos Aires, Argentina. An influential poet and literary critic, he was also a publisher and a translator of English and American poetry. He founded several literary journals, two of the most influential being XUL and Deriva. The former was an important poetry journal that started publishing during Argentina's last military dictatorship in 1980; it continued until 1997 with the printing of its 12th issue. As a journal, XUL provided regular compilations of some the most innovative poetry of its time. The journal was also one of Argentina's best sources of new critical writing. It was dedicated to publishing the most diverse poetics within the experimental tradition. Perednik's work as a poet and editor reflected his interest in many of the poetics included in the journal: visual poetry; John Cage's mesostics; sound and performative texts—along with the most serious experimental works in Latin American poetry. Perednik's own writing was primarily associated with his always expanding interest in exploring language and its relation to poetry rather than with any particular literary school. He had a long career as a teacher and became an important interlocutor for multiple generations of poets. His reading of American poetry became the departure point for some of the most striking Spanish translations of poets such as T. S. Eliot, e. e. cummings, and Charles Olson. In the 1990s, he developed a series of editorial projects with Mexican and American poets. His poetry books include: Los mil micos (1978), El cuerpo del horror (1981), El shock de los Lender (1986), El fin del no (1991), El gran derrapador (2002), and La querella de los gustos (2007), among others. Author City: Buenos Aires ARG