The Same Sea as Every Summer

Overview


Poetic and erotic, El mismo mar de todos los veranos (The Same Sea As Every Summer) was originally published in Spain in 1978, three years after the death of Franco and in the same year that government censorship was abolished. But even in a new era that fostered more liberal attitudes toward divorce, homosexuality, and women's rights, this novel by Esther Tusquets was controversial. Its feminine view of sexuality—in particular, its depiction of a lesbian relationship—was unprecedented in Spanish fiction. ...
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Overview


Poetic and erotic, El mismo mar de todos los veranos (The Same Sea As Every Summer) was originally published in Spain in 1978, three years after the death of Franco and in the same year that government censorship was abolished. But even in a new era that fostered more liberal attitudes toward divorce, homosexuality, and women's rights, this novel by Esther Tusquets was controversial. Its feminine view of sexuality—in particular, its depiction of a lesbian relationship—was unprecedented in Spanish fiction. Now its complex moods and rhythms have been caught in an English translation by Margaret E. W. Jones that has won the Kayden National Translation Award.

The disillusioned narrator of The Same Sea As Every Summer is a middle-aged woman whose unhappy life prompts a journey into she past to rediscover a more authentic self. However, events force her to realize that love or trust will inevitably be repaid by betrayal. This pattern assumes various forms in a story that moves forward as well as backward, playing out in Barcelona among the haute bourgeoisie. Richly textured with allusion, The Same Sea As Every Summer is also a commentary on post-Civil War Spanish society by an author who grew up during the repressive Franco regime. Esther Tusquets’s other novels include El amor es un juego solitano (1979) and Para no volver (1985).

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Editorial Reviews

Library Journal
This novel was first published in 1978, just as Spain was emerging from the 36-year stranglehold of Franco. Since then, Tusquets (born 1936) has written three novels, all involving crisis-ridden women striving to refocus. Uncomfortable as a servile daughter, wife, and mother , and now betrayed by her husband as Ariadne was betrayed by Theseus, our narrator rejects her painful present by seeking out her past. She is aided by Clara, whose New World origins imply lushness and rebirth and whose traits easily recall incidents from the narrator's past. Their love affair spans 27 days. Which of the two, the narrator or the octopus-like Clara, is Beauty and which the Beast? Can there be a Happy Ending? This complex experimental work, with its metaphors from fairy tales and myths and its sentences of Faulknerian convolution, is challenging but worth the effort for its insights on so many levels.-- Jack Shreve, Allegany Community Coll., Cumberland, Md.
Lesbian News

"Lots of people lately have bemoaned the lack of creative, sexy lesbian sex in our fiction. Esther Tusquets had long ago remedied that in Post-Franco Spain, and now we are the lucky beneficiaries of a wonderful translation of her first published novel, The Same Sea as Every Summer, which swims and splashes in women’s sexuality. . . . An exquisitely beautiful book."—Lesbian News
City Limits

"Tusquets's langorous language, lengthy sentences, and minutely detailed observations are reminiscent of Proust, as are her painful meditations on lust and jealousy. . . . Poetic, erotic, and ironic The Same Sea just has to be CL's novel of the year."—City Limits, London
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780803294165
  • Publisher: University of Nebraska Press
  • Publication date: 5/19/1990
  • Series: European Women Writers Series
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 196
  • Product dimensions: 5.50 (w) x 8.50 (h) x 0.48 (d)

Meet the Author


Margaret E. W. Jones is a professor of Spanish at the University of Kentucky and the author of The Literary World of Ana Maria Matute (1970), The contemporary Spanish Novel, 1939–1975 (1985), and other critical works on contemporary Spanish literature.
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