Collections > Electronic Theses and Dissertations > Realismo documental en la narrativa española a principios del siglo XXI
pdf

This dissertation examines the impact of a realistic discourse in the XXI century in the following four Spanish novels: Soldados de Salamina, La noche de los cuatro caminos: una historia de maquis. Madrid, 1945, La voz dormida, and Sefarad: una novela de novelas. These novels use textual documentation to redirect fiction toward an ethical and moral compromise with the repressed historical past, striving to overcome the amnesia of the Spanish imagination and the relativism and indifference of narrative in previous decades. At the same time, these texts are also a testimony of the impossibility of attaining such goal. The introduction examines the various narrative, rhetorical, and theoretical discourses, exploring the realistic aesthetics of these texts and the intimate relationship of history, literature, and memory through the lens of Baudrillard, Hutcheon, Bakhtin, and Derrida. The first part of the dissertation is devoted to the analysis of Soldados, La noche de los Cuatro Caminos: una historia del maquis. Madrid, 1945, and La voz dormida. In Soldados and La noche simulation is employed to erase the frontier between reality and representation. The novels undertake a rhetorical game of investigation, suspense and intrigue to inquire into the historical past. The analysis further explores the role of autobiography and self-conscious writing. My analysis of La voz dormida also delves into the role of women in the writing of historical narratives. The second part of the dissertation is devoted to Sefarad: una novela de novelas. Sefarad also participates in the same autobiographical, intertextual and metafictional play used by Cercas and Trapiello. Moreover, Muñoz Molina uses rhetorical games to recuperate and retain formerly underrepresented and repressed voices in history. I conclude by acknowledging the impossibility of these texts overcoming certain issues of representation and the always problematic relationship of history, literature, and memory. However, these four novels not only make obvious the role of historical memory in reconstructing the past, but represent in themselves "lieux de mémoire," that is, valid commemorative spaces that rethink and confront the past in the historical present of Spain.