Néstor perlongher y Oscar Hermes Villordo : perspectivas divergentes de las homosexualidades argentinas durante el proceso de reorganización nacional




Pierce, Joseph Matthew, 1983-

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In this thesis I examine the construction of homosexual subjectivity in the last military dictatorship in Argentina, the Proceso de Reorganización Nacional (1976-1983), through a comparative study of the first book of poems published by Néstor Perlongher, Austria-Hungría (1980), and two novels by Oscar Hermes Villordo, La brasa en la mano (1983) and La otra mejilla (1986). I analyze the vastly different, often antithetical, political and stylistic projects espoused by each author and show that through the juxtaposition of their respective positions, both resisted the heteronormative dictatorship by creating their own (homo)sexual subjectivities on their own terms. Through the comparison of Perlongher's poetical and political radicalism, his restless search for 'intensidad' and his 'neobarroso' style with Villordo's calculated, journalistic narratives that seek to reevaluate the role of the homosexual in Argentinean society, this thesis analyzes two very different methods that are joined by the inexorable repression of the military and heterosexist dictatorships. In the first chapter I give a brief sketch of the historical and political circumstances that informed the systems of violence that culminated in the systematic state-sponsored terrorism of the 'Proceso'. In the second chapter I analyze Perlongher's Austria- Hungría, paying special attention to the paradoxical relationship between his activist 'persona' and his neobaroque poetic style. In the third chapter I look at Villordo's La brasa en la mano as one of the first novels to openly make use of the 'gay thematic' in Argentinean literature. In the fourth chapter I compare the construction of the hetero/homosexual paradigm as presented in Villordo's La otra mejilla with Eve Kosofsky Sedgwick's theory of 'the closet' and René Girard's theory of 'the scapegoat'. In conclusion, I propose that despite Villordo's journalistic background and relatively modest political convictions, especially when placed in comparison with Perlongher's radicalism, his proposal of visibility and normalization for the homosexual population in Argentina is actually more effective than Perlongher's search for the ecstatic.


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