My day job as an early Americanist, when not not goofing off on this Road Course, is recovering the antebellum literature of Florida. Historians have worked this field for decades, but the literature — a study in obscurity. Take Juan de Castellanos’ Elegia a la muerte de Juan Ponce de Leon, largely ignored in English until PMLA ran my translation.
Where does the literature of what became the mainland United States begin? I claim San Juan, Puerto Rico, via Cuba. From a Spanish-born poet who spent most of his life in Tunja, Columbia.
Transatlantic? Hemispheric? Indeed!