Dystopian Impulses in Contemporary Peninsular Literature and Film

Burkhart, Diana Q., Department of Spanish, Italian, and Portuguese, University of Virginia
Pope, Randolph, Department of Spanish, Italian, and Portuguese, University of Virginia

Dystopian Impulses in Contemporary Peninsular Literature and Film Diana Q. Burkhart The purpose of this study is to analyze dystopian impulses in Peninsular literature and film from the Transition until the present, focusing in particular on spatial representations of dystopia. In the introduction, there is an overview of utopias and dystopias in sociohistoric, literary and critical contexts. The first chapter examines how absurdity and animalization play important roles in creating an authoritarian dystopian environment in Miguel Delibes' novel Parábola del náufrago and José Ruibal's play El hombre y la mosca. In the second chapter, there is an analysis of dystopias that deal with gender issues, concentrating primarily on depictions of worldwide infertility in the novels Memorias de un futuro bárbaro by Montserrat Julió and Temblor by Rosa Montero. The third chapter investigates anarchistic dystopian impulses in Ray Loriga's novel Tokio ya no nos quiere and José Angel Mañas' Historias del Kronen. In the fourth chapter, there is an exploration of the frightening aspects of metropolitan and suburban utopias in the films Abre los ojos directed by Alejandro Amenábar and Ausentes by Daniel Calparsoro. Each of the chapters considers how the types of spaces portrayed reflect underlying concerns about sociopolitical and economic problems. A variety of critical geography theories help to provide a theoretical foundation for the study, such as Michel Foucault's interpretation of the Panopticon, Ignasi de Solà-Morales' concept of Terrain Vague, Gilles Deleuze and Félix Guattari's notion of the rhizome, and Gaston Bachelard's dialectic of internal and external spaces. The conclusion examines the commonalities between the works analyzed, emphasizing the nihilism and emptiness that are manifested in the spatial representations in contemporary Peninsular dystopian fiction.

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PHD (Doctor of Philosophy)
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