Dissertation/Thesis Abstract

Re-humanizando al sujeto alienado: Extrañamientos de to masculino en la narrativa existencial cubana
by Watlington, Francis David, Ph.D., The University of Texas at Austin, 2015, 280; 3663391
Abstract (Summary)

My dissertation Re-Humanizing the Alien: Estranged Masculinities in Cuban Existentialist Fiction examines the role of alienation in the construction of compensatory masculine subjectivities during the social, cultural and industrial modernization of Cuba, dating from the mid-19th century until the initial stages of the Cuban Revolution, in the 1960s. In this project, I analyze, from the perspective of gender studies, transcontinental philosophy and the history of ideas in the Hispanic transatlantic world, the shifts in masculine identity formation among Cuban intellectuals and writers whose work deals with the relation between angst and freedom in the context of crisis tendencies manifested in the developing colonial and postcolonial state.

For this purpose, I will analyze the works of the following Cuban authors: José Antonio Saco (1797-1879), Juan Francisco Manzano (1797-1854), Enrique Labrador Ruiz (1902-1991), Virgilio Pillera (1912-1979), Edmundo Desnoes (1930-) and Calvert Casey (1924-1969). Studying these writers and their literary production, I will be able to contribute to current debates on how existentialist masculinities generate new forms of resistance against patriarchy and colonial control. Moreover, I demonstrate how these gender constructions interrogate traditional notions of Cuban and Spanish Caribbean modernity by taking existentialist thought as its point of departure for fashioning a local counterhegemonic aesthetics.

Consequently, I provide a complementary view on the social construction of gender as a category of analysis for understanding the role of affect in destabilizing cultural gender norms. This project ultimately aims to analyze alternative ways of expressing masculinity which have emerged from within literary negotiations of identity, allowing for a more inclusive and comprehensive evaluation of Cuban male subjectivities, and a deeper understanding of the historical development of social and economic relations in the nation-state as well as its engagement with ideology, race, national character and politics.

Indexing (document details)
Advisor: Salgado, Cesar Augusto
School: The University of Texas at Austin
School Location: United States -- Texas
Source: DAI-A 76/10(E), Dissertation Abstracts International
Subjects: Latin American literature, Latin American history, Philosophy
Keywords: Alienation, Coloniality / Postcoloniality, Critical Race Studies, Existentialism, Masculinities, New Man Archetype
Publication Number: 3663391
ISBN: 978-1-321-90512-0
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