Walt Whitman’s Poemas: A Digital Edition
Start date: August 2005
Published: February 2007
Matt Cohen (UT Austin) and Rachel Price (Princeton U), Editors
Leigh Campoamor (Duke U), Gillian Price (UVA), and Lauren Jones (Duke U), Research Assistants (transcription and encoding)
The first known edition of Walt Whitman’s poems in Spanish translation, titled Poemas, appeared in 1912 in Valencia. Translated by Uruguayan poet and socialist Álvaro Armando Vasseur, the text was based largely on a previously published Italian translation and other foreign editions. This digital edition is freely available at the Walt Whitman Archive (http://www.whitmanarchive.org), offering both the opportunity to teach Whitman’s poetry from its first widely distributed Spanish translation and to consider the larger questions of translation, both literary and cultural, raised by its complex translation history. An introduction by Rachel Price and Matt Cohen traces what is known of the bibliographical genealogy and critical discussion of the text, situates Poemas in its contemporary international literary and political context, and briefly sketches important or unusual features of Vasseur’s translation.
The edition is based on the 1912 F. Sempere issue. Encoding follows Whitman Archive standards, using XML tagging under the rules of the Whitman Archive‘s Document Type Definition (DTD). Transcription is verbatim, with alternate or modernized spellings of words tagged, but not visible, to facilitate searching. A translation of Vasseur’s prologue is provided, and a translation of the edition’s version of “Song of Myself” is available, linked from the editors’ introduction. Page images are not provided; the volume contains no illustrations and is in a standard layout and typographical format.