Abstract

The reception of Poe’s works in Spain begins in the mid-nineteenth century. Many interpretations of Poe were plagued with misconceptions and stereotypes derived from Charles Baudelaire’s influential writings. However, in 1930 Carlos Fernández Cuenca published a seventy-page prologue to a selection of Poe’s stories titled “La caja oblonga.” Fernández Cuenca offers a series of comments on Poe’s secondary writings, such as letters, criticism, and marginalia. His avant-garde aesthetic ideas also play an influential role in the prologue. That level of accuracy would be lost in Spain for decades. Fernández Cuenca’s distant relative Luis Alberto de Cuenca, a poet and a scholar on myth criticism and fantasy literature, has been publishing essays on Poe for the past twenty years. In spite of his expertise in other fields of the genre, those essays seem to have lost a great deal of their heights achieved in 1930. This article analyzes how the image of Poe has evolved in Spain over the past ninety years, juxtaposing the writings of two members of the same family to determine how preconceived depictions and mythical errors have had a strong weight.

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