The Chilean Bildungsroman, 1862-1989
The Bildungsroman details the maturation of a young protagonist, and his or her entrance into the world of adulthood. The coming-of-age process includes establishing and identity, culturally as well as personally, and entering the world of work, both as a means of economic survival and as a means of attaining a sense of self. The pattern of the traditional Bildungsroman has undergone changes in structure as the societies from which the texts spring have undergone transformations. The increasing difficulty of socialization and of achieving a stable cultural identity is a trend seen in coming-of-age novels, and is associated with the rapid pace of change undergone by traditional societies owing to capitalism, rapid industrialization, and neo-liberal economic policies which create a massive influx of foreign elements. This study analyzes how those changes are reflected in bildungsromane written by Chilean authors between 1862 and 1989.