In a message dated 10/27/2003 1:00:48 PM Eastern Standard Time, [log in to unmask] writes:
He concentrated on the man actually named Ramon Fernandez, writer, literary critic and scholar of French and Mexican literature from the early part of the 20th century. At two or three points after he wrote "The Idea of Order at Key West" Stevens responded to questions about whether he intended the poem to point to the actual Ramon Fernandez. He replied by saying he definitely did not intend the connection, so much so that Leon Surette seemed to be implying that it was a case of protesting too much. It was definitely a humorous point in the paper. As far as I can recall, he didn't discuss any other candidates. Sorry if I gave that impression.
Yes, this is one of thetheories of who Ramon was supposed to be. Another is that Ramon Fernandez was an actual person living in the Key West at the time, a friend of Stevens. Yet another, and this theory should be interesting to Eliot enthusiasts, is that Ramon Fernandez was Stevens' secret lover and that Ramon Fernandez was not actually the person's name, that Stevens changed it, but he might of been of Cuban extraction.