Emblematics and the Brazilian Avant-Garde (1920-30s)


In Antropofagia, Aarnoud Rommens shows how this Brazilian avant-garde movement (1920-30s) deconstructed early tendencies in the European vanguard. Through imaginative re-readings, the author reinterprets Antropofagia’s central texts and images as elements within an ever-changing, neo-baroque memory palace. Not only does the movement subvert established conceptions of the pre- and postcolonial; it is also a counter-colonial critique of verbal and visual literacy. To do justice to the dynamic between visibility and legibility, Rommens develops the inventive methodology of ‘emblematics’. The book’s implications are wide-ranging, prompting a revaluation of the avant-garde as a transmedial tactic for disrupting our reading and viewing habits.

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Aarnoud Rommens is BeIPD-COFUND Post-Doctoral Fellow at the University of Liège. He has published on the graphic novel, censorship and Latin American art. Joaquín Torres-García: Constructive Universalism and the Inversion of Abstraction (Routledge, 2016) is his most recent book.
The book appeals to avant-garde and modernism studies, visual studies, critical theory, philosophy of art, postcolonial studies, Latin American visual art, cultural studies, word-image studies and anyone interested in Antropofagia.
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