Date of this Version
Stoffers, Alexis. Life, Strength, Woman: English Translation of Julia de Burgos. Undergraduate Honors Thesis. University of Nebraska-Lincoln. March 2022
The purpose of this translation project is to make Puerto Rican feminist and political activist Julia de Burgos’s poetry available to a wider audience. Its feminist themes and exploration of powerful emotions are just as relevant today as they were in Burgos’s lifetime. Translating these poems to English in the twenty-first century means a whole new generation of developing women will have access to Burgos’s words. They will feel Burgos’s deep and intricate emotions and understand that it’s okay to struggle as long as they remain true to themselves. A detailed history of Burgos’s life accompanies the translated poems in order to give a broader view of Burgos’s passions and experiences and to help readers understand Burgos’s politically charged poems. A scholarly analysis of my translation process is also included to explain how I narrowed down my selection to 21 poems that capture not only the spirit and style of Burgos, but also represent poetry from across her lifetime on a variety of subjects. I also deliberately included poems with unique form, as Burgos’s poetry shows her individualism in its form as well as its voice. This translation project will be a useful resource for anyone studying Puerto Rican history as well as for today’s women, who will surely be inspired by Burgos’s empowering words.