We are unable to display your institutional affiliation without JavaScript turned on.
Browse Book and Journal Content on Project MUSE


Download PDF

New/Nueva York in Giannina Braschi's "Poetic Egg": Fragile Identity, Postmodernism, and Globalization


This essay discusses the multivocal and interlingual referentiality in the prose poems (or sections) called the "Diario íntimo de la soledad" ("The Intimate Diary of Solitude") by Giannina Braschi in the final sections of El imperio de los sueños (1988), translated as Empire of Dreams (1994). The connections between globalization and postmodernism occur in the how and why of international cultural references. Braschi refers to the cultural world of the Spanish-American writer in New York in funny ventriloquisms voiced by barely sketched characters. The fractured, cosmopolitan cityscape of New York provides the context for postmodern parodic elegy and performance informed by the perspective of Puerto Ricans in a global context, a global South consisting of two islands within the same country. After the locus amoenus of imperial dreams, the poem in the "Diario" moves to contemplate New York, then an island (both Manhattan and Puerto Rico are islands) and the sea. The postmodern ways in which Braschi represents and refers to the megalopolis of New/eva York do not thematize a political message, but rather the complexity of Puerto Rico's political and cultural condition finds an echo as a "poetic egg." After reminding readers of the connections between globalization and Postmodernism, I show that Linda Hutcheon's theory of five "routes to reference" in Postmodernism occur in Braschi's work.