Dissertation/Thesis Abstract

Humor and homosexuality in contemporary Mexican narrative
by Bisbey, Brandon Patrick, Ph.D., Tulane University, 2011, 234; 3483909
Abstract (Summary)

This dissertation examines the use of gender-based humor in eight Mexican novels published between 1979 and 2007, examining the way the texts attempt to use this humor in sympathetic portrayals of male homosexuality. The introduction presents the theoretical framework for the analysis of the novels--based on linguistic theories of humor and queer and gender theory-- and suggests the autobiography of the early 20th-century intellectual Salvador Novo as a precursor to later sympathetic humorous portrayals of male homosexuality in Mexican literature. The following four chapters each juxtapose two novels which are related through thematic or formal similarities. The first chapter focuses on El Vampiro de la colonia Rama by Luis Zapata and Mátame y verás by José Joaquín Blanco, two novels whose narrators unconsciously and ironically reiterate homophobic and masculinist values through their narrations, showing the instability of their own sense of identity and how homophobia is often reiterated by gay culture in Mexico. The second chapter examines Brenda Berenice o el diario de una loca by Luis Montaño and Luis Zapata's La hermana secreta de Angélica María, two texts that depict transvestism and transsexuality in a humorous manner, questioning the validity and appropriateness of the use of camp and ironic gender performance by homosexual men in the Mexican context. The third chapter looks at Utopía gay, by José Rafael Calva, and La historia de siempre, by Luis Zapata, two novels whose plots center on same-sex unions, questioning their viability as a path to homosexual liberation and critiquing the authoritative use of discourse to define love, sex and identity. The fourth chapter analyzes Púrpura by Ana García Bergua and Fruta verde by Enrique Serna, two coming-of-age novels in which young male protagonists who are influenced personally and artistically by sexual and emotional relationships with older men ultimately refuse to define themselves as either homosexual or heterosexual: In the consideration of each text close attention is paid to the ways in which gender-based humor disturbs or questions dominant views of sexuality and gender in Mexican society, in which male homosexuality is normally devalued through association with femininity.

Indexing (document details)
Advisor: Shea, Maureen
School: Tulane University
School Location: United States -- Louisiana
Source: DAI-A 73/02, Dissertation Abstracts International
Subjects: Latin American literature, LGBTQ studies
Keywords: 20-21st century, Homosexuality, Humor, Mexico, Novel, Zapata, Luis
Publication Number: 3483909
ISBN: 978-1-267-00923-4
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