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Art-Mimesis and Political Reality in Juan Carlos Tabío’s El elefante y la bicicleta and Fernando Pérez’s Suite Habana

Baker, EM; (2018) Art-Mimesis and Political Reality in Juan Carlos Tabío’s El elefante y la bicicleta and Fernando Pérez’s Suite Habana. Journal of Iberian and Latin American Research , 24 (1) pp. 42-54. 10.1080/13260219.2018.1471152. Green open access

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Abstract

This article uses the concept of art-mimesis to examine the reflections of two films, Juan Carlos Tabío’s El elefante y la bicicleta and Fernando Pérez’s Suite Habana, on the capacity of film to impact upon social reality in the context of the economic and political crises of the 1990s and early 2000s in Cuba. With reference to debates regarding the function of mimesis in the Cuban critical text The Viewer’s Dialectic by Tomás Gutiérrez Alea, I argue that El elefante y la bicicleta retreats into fantasy, cutting itself off in a self-referential loop, and thus reflects the film industry’s turmoil of the mid-1990s. Suite Habana, on the other hand, represents an adaptation to crisis in the form of cheaper production techniques, and a return of revolutionary ideals in the presentation of a scenario, whereby the division between art and labor could be eradicated.

Type: Article
Title: Art-Mimesis and Political Reality in Juan Carlos Tabío’s El elefante y la bicicleta and Fernando Pérez’s Suite Habana
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
DOI: 10.1080/13260219.2018.1471152
Publisher version: https://doi.org/10.1080/13260219.2018.1471152
Language: English
Additional information: This version is the author accepted manuscript. For information on re-use, please refer to the publisher’s terms and conditions.
Keywords: Cuba, film, realism, mimesis
UCL classification: UCL
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL SLASH
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL SLASH > Faculty of Arts and Humanities
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL SLASH > Faculty of Arts and Humanities > SELCS
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/10084049
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