Entropic comedy and the postmodern vision: An analysis of "Un mundo para Julius" by Alfredo Bryce Echenique, a poststructural approach, with a translation of the novel into English.
Committee ChairTatum, Charles M.
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PublisherThe University of Arizona.
RightsCopyright © is held by the author. Digital access to this material is made possible by the University Libraries, University of Arizona. Further transmission, reproduction or presentation (such as public display or performance) of protected items is prohibited except with permission of the author.
AbstractThis first full length reading of the Peruvian Alfredo Bryce Echenique's 1970 novel Un mundo para Julius approached from a deconstructionist viewpoint shows how prior misreadings have led to its being interpreted primarily as a realist work with innovative passages. Through extended close reading, it is shown to be an early Latin American example of postmodern entropic comedy. Parody and the ludic aspects of the novelist's art in the work present a view of reality in which all metanarratives are negated. An analysis is included of deconstructionist theory/strategies showing deconstruction's contribution through non-belief in the primary text to recognition of the viability of translation studies as an academic discipline. The first translation into English of Bryce's novel accompanies the dissertation and is drawn upon extensively for interpretation of passages that have previously caused interpretative problems. The prominence of the comic in postmodern literature is discussed, along with the nature and provoking of laughter. Explanations are suggested for Bryce's highly comic novel not being read as such; rather, in prior criticism the tragic has been foregrounded at the expense of the comic elements. It is suggested that Bryce's and other Latin American novels of the 1960s and early 1970s be viewed as marking a transition from modernism to postmodernism, putting Latin American literature in line with the novelistic mainstream worldwide. The boom, far from being a new move in Latin American literature of the 1960s, is seen as belated critical recognition of a modernism which dates back at least to the 1920s, with sporadic manifestations of the postmodern spirit existing there from the same time. Since the nature of deconstruction is to affirm that no definite conclusions or final readings may be drawn, this dissertation is put forth in the spirit that it be conducive to refutation and to foster further readings of the work of Bryce and neglected modernist and postmodernist Latin American writers whose work should by now be seen as part of world literature and not as a local or exotic variant.
Degree ProgramSpanish and Portuguese