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Grotesque Deconstruction of Oficial Colonial and Postcolonial Latin-American Identities

From Valle-Inclan’s Tirano Banderas to Silviano Santiago’s Cosmopolitismo do pobre

Pedro Santa María de Abreu    Faculdade de Ciências Sociais e Humanas, Universidade Nova de Lisboa, Portugal    

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abstract

This article explores the deconstructive function of grotesque elements in contemporary Spanish and Ibero-American Literature. Starting with Tirano Banderas. Novela de Tierra Caliente (1926), a highlight in Valle-Inclan’s esperpento aesthetics, mocking what authors as Bakhtin or Foucault pointed out as “official truths”, both collective and individual. It is argued that grotesque representation establishes a subversive relation when confronted with epic or tragic modes, as established by aristotelic-horatian and dogmatic poetics. This may shed some light on the relation between grotesque structure and critical deconstruction, from the so-called Baroque era up until modernist and postmodernist essay, such as it is the case of one of the most thoroughly sophisticated contemporary writers in Brasil, Silviano Santiago, whose collection of essays O Cosmopolitismo do Pobre (2004) is the third pillar of our analysis.

Published
Dec. 11, 2018
Accepted
April 1, 2018
Submitted
Feb. 8, 2018
Language
ES