‘Corporeal Mysticism’ in Ernestina de Champourcín’s Poetry: Analysis and Implications of a selection of poems from La voz en el viento and Cántico Inútil

The “Generación del 27” is generally associated with poets like Pedro Salinas, Dámaso Alonso, Rafael Alberti, Federico García Lorca, Gerardo Diego, Jorge Guillén, or Vicente Aleixandre. All of them have something in common: they are all men. In the shadows of these poets, there are very accomplished female writers that do not receive the attention that they deserve. Only two of them were included in Gerardo Diego’s anthology of 1934: Josefina de la Torre and Ernestina de Champourcín (Cole 2000). This paper will examine the works of the second one, Ernestina de Champourcín, and more concretely a poem selection of the books La voz en el viento and Cántico Inútil, both pertaining to the “Love, Desire and Trascendence” period proposed in Bellver 2001. Echoes of Santa Teresa's and San Juan de la Cruz's mystic poetry are present in all of her productions in general and in the previous two books in particular. These voices of the past will be analyzed through the lense of Julia Kristeva's intertextuality theory (1980), which will help in making connections and determining the relevance of Champourcín's poetry in the “patriarchal society” of the 1920s-30s (Debicki 1988). My paper will show the literary strategies with which her poetry solidifies the abstract echoes of mysticism into the concrete suggestions of eroticism. By means of a detailed analysis of a selection of her poems, this paper aims not only to explore the characteristics of Champourcin’s “corporeal mysticism”, but also to determine the implications of her counter hegemonic poetry. 


  • Spanish Peninsular Studies