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Archive of Hispanic Literature on Tape

Pablo Neruda reading for the AHLOT in the Library of Congress Recording Lab, 1966 (Prints and Photographs Division, LC)

The Archive of Hispanic Literature on Tape (AHLOT) was begun in 1943 by the Hispanic Division of the Library of Congress to record audio recordings of poets and prose writers from Spain, Portugal, Latin America, the Caribbean and from the Hispanic Community in the United States reading from their works.

To date, close to 750 authors have been recorded including Nobel Laureates Juan Ramón Jiménez, Vicente Aleixandre, Camilo José Cela, Gabriela Mistral, Pablo Neruda, Miguel Angel Asturias, Gabriel García Márquez, Octavio Paz, and Mario Vargas Llosa. Other authors of note include Jorge Luis Borges, Julio Cortázar, Elena Poniatowska, Carlos Fuentes, Jorge Amado, and Nélida Piñón.

32 countries are represented in this diverse recorded sound collection which includes readings in Spanish, English, Portuguese, Catalan, Basque, French, Dutch, Creole, Náhuatl, Zapotec, Quechua and Aymara. The majority of the recordings have been done in the Library of Congress' Recording Laboratory. Researchers may listen to the recordings in the Hispanic Division Reading Room. The AHLOT is still actively capturing the voices of contemporary Luso-Hispanic literature to this day.

A selection of the AHLOT was launched online on September 2015. For the first time a number of these recordings are available as streamed audio. 50 newly digitized recordings are added to this site yearly.

The Archive of Hispanic Literature on Tape: A Descriptive Guide (Washington: Library of Congress, 1974) provides information on the first 232 authors who recorded for the Archive. This digitized text is available from HathiTrust.

Articles on the AHLOT

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  May 6, 2020
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