Materiality and Corporeality: The Body in Popular Fiction and Visual Culture

“Contemplating the Male Body: From Aesthetics to Sexual Pleasure in Homosexual Literature”. Materiality and Corporeality: The Body in Popular Fiction and Visual Culture. University of Portsmouth, Portsmouth, 6 June 2013.

In this paper I analyse the representations of male bodies in André Gide’s The Immoralist (1902), Thomas Mann’s Death in Venice (1912) and D.H. Lawrence’s Women in Love (1920), with a particular focus on the perception with which the perceiving subject beholds the body. The male body is often turned into a voyeuristic spectacle when it is described in elaborate detail and perceived by an attentive subject whose gaze enjoys the contemplation of the object-body. On the one hand, the bodies that are objectified in that manner become objects of aesthetic contemplation. On the other hand, however, they also become potential sources for sexual pleasure. This article investigates the ways in which perceptions of male bodies are aestheticized and/or eroticised in these texts.

Conference: Nineteenth- Century Aetiologies, Exoticism, and Multimodal Aesthetics

“Uncanny Aesthetics in Kafka’s America or The Man who Disappeared”. Nineteenth- Century Aetiologies, Exoticism, and Multimodal Aesthetics Conference, Liverpool University, Liverpool, 2 April 2013.

This paper analyses the aesthetic creation of the Uncanny in the narrative of Kafka, especially in his novel Amerika, first published in 1927. The paper argues how the Uncanny can be perceived through the descriptions the main character does of the closed spaces or buildings which appear in the novel. The subjective perception of Karl Rossmann is linked to his unconscious and indicates a presence of the ‘unintentional return’ of a threat, in this case the threat of being expelled once and again which justifies his endless wanderings in America.


Conference: LVIII Annual Conference of the Anglo-Catalan Society

“The Illness of the Environment: Nature, Culture and Human Life in The Time of the Doves”. LVIII Annual Conference of the Anglo-Catalan Society, University of Sheffield. Sheffield, 9-11 November 2012.

I analyse in The Time of the Doves how the experience of the war goes beyond the narrator’s subjective perception and it involves all her surroundings.  First of all, I analyse the relation between war and the destruction of material and espiritual goods. Then, culture will be considered as a whole, that is, englobing both human parts: material and espiritual ones, and its relation to the environment.An important part of this analisys is the symbolic language because through it the author widely achieves the unity between Natàlia’s individual point of view and the universal meaning that simbology allows. Thus, a novel with a unique narrator perspective becomes one of common experience. Through narrator’s language, her personal experience of the war acquires a cosmologycal meaning, and it is through this characteristic that The Time of the Doves becomes  universal.

Article: 1616: Anuario de la Sociedad Española de Literatura General y Comparada

“La Culpa en Macbeth y La Vida es Sueño” in 1616: Anuario de la Sociedad Española de Literatura General y Comparada”  Vol. 2, 2012.

This article introduces an analysis about the guilt in the characters of Macbeth (Shakespeare, Macbeth) and Basilio (Calderón de la Barca, La Vida es Sueño). The shame, in order to be absolutely assumed, should be the result of free decisions taken by the subject, therefore, in both works should be considered the influence of external elements on the characters, as for example, the witches in Macbeth and the stars in La Vida es Sueño. This also leads to a reflection on responsibility, freedom and consciousness in both characters. The comparative regards the analysis of the external elements and its influence on the events in the works, the two different manners of dealing with guilt, which leads, in one case, to the destruction of the character, and in the other case, to his redemption.