Roberto Bolaño, La Ironía Y Sus Precursores


Resumen del Libro

This dissertation explores the relationship between political enunciation and narrative form in the work of three Chilean authors: Roberto Bolano and two of his precursors, Alfonso Alcalde and Pedro Lemebel. In order to open up the debates of the Left in Chile to the rest of Latin America, the dissertation establishes Fidel Castros famous Palabras a los intelectuales (1961), as the foundational moment of a string of theoretical discussions throughout the continent, notably in Socialist Chile. The dissertation conceptualises and frames the content, aims and purposes of these historic debates within the domain of three fundamental theoretical concerns: (1) the need to find a definition of the figure of the intellectual, (2) the need to identify genre-specific operations that are formal and at the same time function as political enunciations and (3) the need to establish the terms of the relationship between the State (through its cultural institutions), and intellectuals. The debate in Chile did not always follow the path opened up by discussion in Cuba. Long before the destabilization provoked by the Caso Padilla (1971), the relationship between the two revolutionary Lefts (the Chilean and the Cuban), was as fraught with tension as it was with mutual support and admiration. I argue that, notwithstanding their declared commitment to speaking from and for the Latin American Left, the three authors in my corpus understand the relationship between literature and politics in ways that differ from what is put forth in these debates, and that they formulate their views through the medium of fiction. The dissertation seeks to rescue from oblivion the concept of irony, not only as a rhetorical figure, but also as narrative form, arguing that the authors examined adhere to various traditions, not only from Latin America. The purpose of the dissertation is to re-consider the distinction between politics and the political, to rethink those aspects of the political that are…

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