Towards a New Realism? Recent Trends in Latin American Fiction and Poetry

By Julio Prieto.

Published by The Humanities Collection

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Article: Electronic $US5.00

This paper offers a critical overview of the literary scene in Latin America during the last two decades. The latest trends in fiction and poetry are read together as symptoms of an epochal cultural vector that tends to be critical of hegemonic discourses (neoliberalism, globalization) and of literary operations that work for sublimation, transcendence, allegory, and essentialist conceptions of identity. The latest generations of Latin American writers --writers such as César Aira, Wáshington Cucurto and Sergio Raimondi, whose work is examined here in detail, and others such as Alberto Laiseca, Gabriela Bejerman, Alberto Fuguet, Mario Bellatin or Rita Indiana Hernández-- share a desire to depart from Latin American literary movements associated with those operations (namely, from magical realism and fantastic literature in fiction, and from the rich tradition of 20th-century modernist poetry), as well as an attempt to establish the ground for a new definition and practice of realism, a re-imagining of the local and the community in the face of globalization which, in its effort to fully embrace the present --its actual socio-economic conditions as much as the discursive layers and fantasies that pervade it--, tends to a certain occlusion of memory and history.

Keywords: New Realism, Latin American Fiction and Poetry, Postmodernism, Globalization, Community

The International Journal of the Humanities, Volume 5, Issue 4, pp.31-40. Article: Print (Spiral Bound). Article: Electronic (PDF File; 544.825KB).

Dr. Julio Prieto

Research Fellow, Latin American Literature, Universität Potsdam, Berlin, Germany

Julio Prieto is a writer and professor of Latin American literature and culture. Since completing his Ph.D. at New York University, he has held teaching positions at several North American research universities. He is the author of the book "Unbound: Ex-Centricity and Avant-Garde Fiction in Argentina and Uruguay" (2002), of a volume of poetry, "Sedemas" (2006), and of numerous articles on Latin American literature and culture. His main research areas are Latin American literature and film, avant-garde fiction and poetry, and modern art and culture. At present he holds the position of Alexander von Humboldt Research Fellow at the University of Potsdam, where he is working on a book on modernity and the politics of style in Latin America.

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