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A study of the contemporary Spanish fantastic genre: short stories and micro-stories by Cristina Fernández Cubas, José María Merino and Ángel Olgoso

Grant number: 12/21996-4
Support type:Scholarships abroad - Research
Effective date (Start): September 09, 2013
Effective date (End): March 18, 2014
Field of knowledge:Linguistics, Literature and Arts - Literature - Literature Theory
Principal researcher:Roxana Guadalupe Herrera Alvarez
Grantee:Roxana Guadalupe Herrera Alvarez
Host: Juan Herrero Cecilia
Home Institution: Instituto de Biociências, Letras e Ciências Exatas (IBILCE). Universidade Estadual Paulista (UNESP). Campus de São José do Rio Preto. São José do Rio Preto , SP, Brazil
Research place: Universidad de Castilla-La Mancha, Ciudad Real (UCLM), Spain  

Abstract

Until relatively recent years, in the context of Spanish literature, the fantastic genre did not receive the deserved attention by critics, whether because it was deemed subliterature or a minor genre, or because there was a kind of consensual view of the Spanish literature as expression of realism, as stated by David Roas and Ana Casas in the Introduction of the special issue of "Lo fantástico en España (1980-2010)", published in the Ínsula periodical in 2010. Certainly, this perception has been experimenting visible changes along the past years in Spain, as it may be seen in the (re)discovery, appreciation and publication of works of fantasy literature of the 19th and 20th centuries produced in Spain and several countries (ROAS, 2010). Another relevant data is the attitude by academic criticism, which has been opening room for favorable discussion, within the university context, about fantasy literature, its scholars and authors. Hence, the critical and theoretical production of Juan Herrero Cecilia, a professor at Universidad de Castilla-La Mancha, and the artistic and theoretical works of David Roas, a professor at Universidad Autónoma de Barcelona, have contributed to distinguish and value the literary production of important contemporary writers in the context of the Spanish fantasy literature. This research proposes a study of fantasy short stories and micro-stories presently produced in Spain, from a selection of a group of literary texts which will be analyzed with the aid of theories developed within the Spanish academic domain and focusing on fantasy, short story and micro-story. For that purpose, three renowned contemporary Spanish writers were selected: Cristina Fernández Cubas (1945-), José María Merino (1941-) and Ángel Olgoso (1961-). These three writhers have been producing, in the past decades of the 20th century and beginning of this century, fantasy literature works which establish a fruitful dialogue with the tradition of the genre mainly with regard to the treatment of remarkable themes, such as the double, the haunted house, dreams, death, insanity, just to name a few. This research aims to apprehend the conception of fantasy guiding their literary work and also to understand how the choices of short story and micro-story are decisively connected to the achievement of the fantasy effect given by Cubas, Merino and Olgoso to their narratives. For the study of the selected short stories and micro-stories, the proposals by Juan Herrero Cecilia, partially found in his work Estética y pragmática del relato fantástico. Las estrategias narrativas y la cooperación interpretativa del lector (2000), in addition to the theoretical works by David Roas, such as Tras los límites de lo real. Una definición de lo fantástico (2011) have proven to be essential. The results achieved on the conclusion of this research are hoped to build bridges with the Brazilian and Hispanic-American literature by widening the range of authors and critics to be studied in future projects. (AU)

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