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Politics, ideology and the Colombian novel 1951-1987: A critical contribution

Quiroga Cifuentes, AO; (2013) Politics, ideology and the Colombian novel 1951-1987: A critical contribution. Doctoral thesis , UCL (University College London).

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This thesis is a critical contribution to the study of Colombian novels published between 1951 and 1987 which aims to explore the political and ideological environment, pressures and cultural contexts within which they were shaped. Taking into account the label ‘novelas de la violencia’ applied to many of them this thesis proposes to tackle them as products of historical contingency given the broader implications these novels possess and it asks to what extent and how the novels express the notions of politics and ideology. It approaches, first, the controversial power system of the liberal and conservative parties as understood historically during this period in order to evaluate the politico-ideological power relations that led to novel production. Then, following the link between politics and ideology it offers a close reading of nine representative novels, as case studies, to trace the contingencies mediating the reproduction of bipartisan power together with the necessity of reforms and the demand for political participation experienced by the lower classes. The novels are studied individually and, while drawing upon Jane Tompkins’s notion of the novel as the ‘product of historical contingencies’, the case studies highlight some of the historical aspects introduced earlier, such as bipartisan regular coalitions in the 1950s that, later on, gave rise to the National Front and the guerrilla conflict. In its attempt to go beyond the traditional views on these novels the study also incorporates theoretical views such as those of Terry Eagleton on politics considered as a ‘machine’ that is fuelled by ideological preaching and ‘indoctrination’, Pierre Macherey’s theory of the unspoken as well as the Gramscian notion of the intellectual, among others. Delimiting the field and the specific internal dynamics that characterise the period before the 1990s, the thesis ultimately reveals how these novels incorporate in them the particular issue of the ‘letrado’, its legacy and evolution lying at the centre of Latin American discourse. Offering an analysis on the Colombian ‘letrado’ and its ideological affiliations ranging from communism to liberalism to conservatism, it identifies the respective political affiliations of each of the authors, the role of the intellectual and his impact on the political process in twentieth-century Colombia.

Type: Thesis (Doctoral)
Title: Politics, ideology and the Colombian novel 1951-1987: A critical contribution
Language: English
Additional information: Permission for digitisation not received
UCL classification: UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL SLASH
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/1391570
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