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Author's School

Graduate School of Arts & Sciences

Author's Department/Program

Romance Languages and Literatures


Akiko Tsuchiya, Andrew Brown, Bret Gustafson, Stephanie Kirk, Tabea Linhard, Joseph Schraibman, Richard Walter


English (en)

Date of Award

Summer 8-15-2007

Degree Type

Restricted Access Dissertation

Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)


My dissertation explores the ways in which female desire is used as a political metaphor to parody traditional gender roles imposed during the Francoist dictatorship. I focus on a series of discursive strategies that are structured around two fundamental thematic axes: island-isolation and exile-displacement, as well as parody. By examining these textual manifestations of female desire, this study demonstrates that these rhetorical devices are a valuable way of reclaiming the socio-political presence of the queer subject, as well as a unique manner of re-reading contemporary Peninsular culture. Thus, I propose a queer reading, based on the work of Judith Butler, that centers on the tensions between invisibility and visibility of female desire. The first two chapters show the mechanisms that regulated sexual desire, especially same-sex desire, in Franco's Spain, as well as the ways in which queer subjects resisted social control. In narrative texts by Riera and Martín Gaite (Chapter 1), the main characters invent two islands, Mallorca and Bergai, to represent and to parody the society of the early years after Franco's death. Likewise, the works by Moix and Mayoral (Chapter 2) propose a revision of historical events, such as the Second Republic, the Civil War, and the postwar, as well as a parodic (re)interpretation of Franco's Spain from a queer perspective. Analyses of works by Soler Espiauba and Etxebarría (Chapter 3) consider the use of same-sex female desire as a way to parody the literary market and its ideological function, particularly in imposing traditional gender roles. The last chapter investigates the intersections between Catalan and Basque nationalism and female desire in films by Balletbò-Coll and Calparsoro as a powerful strategy to expose the dangers of any kind of social hegemony, regardless of its political tendency. In addition, I approach literature and film as two mutually dependent and complementary discourses in the analysis of post-Francoist culture.



Permanent URL: Print version available in library catalog at Call # LD5791.8 PhD2007 M68.