Dynamic Memories and Meanings: Memory Discourses in Postdictatorial Literary and Visual Culture in Brazil and Argentina

Persistent Link:
http://hdl.handle.net/10150/194405
Title:
Dynamic Memories and Meanings: Memory Discourses in Postdictatorial Literary and Visual Culture in Brazil and Argentina
Author:
Rajca, Andrew C.
Issue Date:
2010
Publisher:
The University of Arizona.
Rights:
Copyright © 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.
Abstract:
This dissertation examines memory discourses about the most recent military dictatorships in Brazil and Argentina produced in two photography exhibitions (the Brazilian government sponsored A ditadura no Brasil 1964-1985 and Marcelo Brodsky's Los compañeros) and two novels (Beatriz Bracher's Não falei and Sergio Chejfec's Los planetas). My research focuses on the capacity of postdictatorial cultural production to explore the negotiated spaces of meaning in both individual memories and collective discourses about the past. Drawing from interdisciplinary theoretical considerations on such themes as memory, representation, discourse, and subjectivity, I argue that cultural production that accentuates the impossibility to fully represent the past creates the conditions of possibility for spaces of dynamic memory about the military dictatorships in Brazil and Argentina. These cultural spaces of representation offer the opportunity to destabilize the discursive logic that typically guides postdictatorial memory narratives through the reiteration of the same (counter)hegemonic political ideologies that dominated these eras of dictatorship. While I critique the A ditadura no Brasil photography exhibit for its presentation of an idealized counter-narrative about this time period, I contend that the memory discourses offered by Brodsky, Bracher, and Chejfec create spaces for a more meaningful engagement with the dictatorial past, particularly for those who did not directly experience the authoritarian governments in Brazil and Argentina. I maintain that instead of attempting to articulate a narrative "truth" about dictatorship, these works lay bare the negotiated processes of memory and meaning for the readers and spectators, which offers an opportunity to activate memory for new uses within different socio-political contexts in the present. Through this dissertation project, I seek to contribute to recent critical work calling for a new language to articulate the memory of dictatorship and innovative ways to engage traumatic experiences of the past through both literary and visual culture expressions. The continued consideration of memory discourses produced in postdictatorial cultural production is an essential component within the ongoing debates on the transmission of social memory about dictatorship in Brazil and Argentina, and for other populations attempting to engage the violence of an authoritarian past and its residual effects on the present.
Type:
text; Electronic Dissertation
Keywords:
Argentina; Brazil; memory; narrative; postdictatorship; visual culture
Degree Name:
Ph.D.
Degree Level:
doctoral
Degree Program:
Spanish; Graduate College
Degree Grantor:
University of Arizona
Committee Chair:
da Costa Bezerra, Katia; Compitello, Malcolm A

Full metadata record

DC FieldValue Language
dc.language.isoENen_US
dc.titleDynamic Memories and Meanings: Memory Discourses in Postdictatorial Literary and Visual Culture in Brazil and Argentinaen_US
dc.creatorRajca, Andrew C.en_US
dc.contributor.authorRajca, Andrew C.en_US
dc.date.issued2010en_US
dc.publisherThe University of Arizona.en_US
dc.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.en_US
dc.description.abstractThis dissertation examines memory discourses about the most recent military dictatorships in Brazil and Argentina produced in two photography exhibitions (the Brazilian government sponsored A ditadura no Brasil 1964-1985 and Marcelo Brodsky's Los compañeros) and two novels (Beatriz Bracher's Não falei and Sergio Chejfec's Los planetas). My research focuses on the capacity of postdictatorial cultural production to explore the negotiated spaces of meaning in both individual memories and collective discourses about the past. Drawing from interdisciplinary theoretical considerations on such themes as memory, representation, discourse, and subjectivity, I argue that cultural production that accentuates the impossibility to fully represent the past creates the conditions of possibility for spaces of dynamic memory about the military dictatorships in Brazil and Argentina. These cultural spaces of representation offer the opportunity to destabilize the discursive logic that typically guides postdictatorial memory narratives through the reiteration of the same (counter)hegemonic political ideologies that dominated these eras of dictatorship. While I critique the A ditadura no Brasil photography exhibit for its presentation of an idealized counter-narrative about this time period, I contend that the memory discourses offered by Brodsky, Bracher, and Chejfec create spaces for a more meaningful engagement with the dictatorial past, particularly for those who did not directly experience the authoritarian governments in Brazil and Argentina. I maintain that instead of attempting to articulate a narrative "truth" about dictatorship, these works lay bare the negotiated processes of memory and meaning for the readers and spectators, which offers an opportunity to activate memory for new uses within different socio-political contexts in the present. Through this dissertation project, I seek to contribute to recent critical work calling for a new language to articulate the memory of dictatorship and innovative ways to engage traumatic experiences of the past through both literary and visual culture expressions. The continued consideration of memory discourses produced in postdictatorial cultural production is an essential component within the ongoing debates on the transmission of social memory about dictatorship in Brazil and Argentina, and for other populations attempting to engage the violence of an authoritarian past and its residual effects on the present.en_US
dc.typetexten_US
dc.typeElectronic Dissertationen_US
dc.subjectArgentinaen_US
dc.subjectBrazilen_US
dc.subjectmemoryen_US
dc.subjectnarrativeen_US
dc.subjectpostdictatorshipen_US
dc.subjectvisual cultureen_US
thesis.degree.namePh.D.en_US
thesis.degree.leveldoctoralen_US
thesis.degree.disciplineSpanishen_US
thesis.degree.disciplineGraduate Collegeen_US
thesis.degree.grantorUniversity of Arizonaen_US
dc.contributor.chairda Costa Bezerra, Katiaen_US
dc.contributor.chairCompitello, Malcolm Aen_US
dc.contributor.committeememberGutierrez, Lauraen_US
dc.contributor.committeememberAcosta, Abrahamen_US
dc.identifier.proquest11121en_US
dc.identifier.oclc752260979en_US
All Items in UA Campus Repository are protected by copyright, with all rights reserved, unless otherwise indicated.