Muerte de la poesía: el acto poético en la obra de Roberto Bolaño Open Access

Diaz, Angel Manuel (2014)

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This dissertation argues that poetry is the hidden driving force in Roberto Bolaño's prose and its central preoccupation. Poets within his work become peripheral subjects who are emblematic of failure and marginalization from cultural and political institutions. I focus on three novels that are set in the seventies - Estrella distante (1996), Los detectives salvajes (1998), and Amuleto (1999) - that form an arch between the events that foreshadowed the real events of the Tlatelolco Massacre in Mexico (1968) and the coup d'état in Chile (1973) and its aftermath. I explore how in these texts, the annihilation of the individual poet, and poetry in general, materializes at the crux between national politics and the poetics of modernity. Bolaño engages with Western poetic traditions while simultaneously criticizing the governmental, artistic, and sexual regulatory discourses of these societies. In this dissertation, I also examine how Bolaño's characters assume a Romantic standpoint and position themselves at the margins of traditional, bureaucratic, and very conservative institutions to question and contest modernity in Latin America. From the margins of society, the poets depicted in Bolaño's work also showcase its shortcomings.

Table of Contents

Introducción. Roberto Bolaño: hacia una poética de la marginalidad 1

1. Estrella distante: poesía y crueldad 32

2. Los detectives salvajes: el fracaso de la modernidad 107

3. La voz en espiral: testimonio y trauma en Amuleto 160

Conclusión. La literatura no es inocente 206

Obras consultadas 236

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