PLIEGUES SUBLIMES: LO EXTRAÑO, LO RARO Y LO PERTURBADOR EN SIMÓN BOLÍVAR, JUANA MANUELA GORRITI Y RICARDO PALMA
Munoz, Maria Veronica
Aguilar Mora, Jorge
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This dissertation is about nineteenth-century Latin American fantastic narratives interestingly packed with dream sequences and ghostly apparitions. It works how Simón Bolívar, Juana Manuela Gorriti and Ricardo Palma delve into the uncanny dimensions of reality to subvert the national, hegemonic discourses by challenging and transgressing the boundaries of the epistemological status quo. In chapter 1, the conflicts inherent in the conception of Modernity are read vis-à-vis the critical lenses of the Kantian sublime, the allegory, and the fold. Gilles Deleuze ’ s <italic>fold</italic> serves to explore how intellectuals have constructed what they call reality, as their texts <italic>fold</italic> into their own narratives, or the writings of their generation, in order to <italic>unfold</italic> the cracking surface of their discursive agendas. Thus, the role of <italic>letrados</italic> is reconsidered as voices coming from the elites who envision themselves as <italic>that Other</italic> they themselves reject. Finally, Walter Benjamin ’ s <italic>allegory</italic> links ghosts and spirits directly to their historical background, establishing a consistent relationship between culture and politics, the impact of literary texts on social thought, and the dynamics of cultural transfer. In chapter 2, Bolívar ’ s <italic>poetic delirium</italic> acknowledges the risk of his dream for a unified Latin America turning into a delirious nightmare if it is solely founded on his strong leadership. On chapter 3, even though Gorriti ’ s short stories count with the support of her peers from the Generation of 37, I focus on how she exposes the abjection and ugliness that lies beneath the main debates of her times: civilization and barbarism, and the role of women in the new republics. Her <italic>poetics from behind the fog</italic> enables her to participate in these debates while being widely accepted in literary circles. Similarly on chapter 4, the narratives of Ricardo Palma and his <italic>miraculous poetic</italic> defy the core structure of a modern Peruvian state through an acknowledgement of popular voices, which he seems to perceive as the real builders of the nation. All these writers recognize the need to find alternative models for the challenges inherent in a postcolonial Latin America.