Curiosidad Barroca: La Colección en la Cultura Literaria Hispanoamericana Virreinal y Contemporánea
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My main thesis is that Baroque can be considered not only as an aesthetic or historical period in the seventeenth century; it is also a way of producing knowledge that puts into dynamic interaction diverse genres, disciplines and historical contexts. I visualize my project under the rubric of a cabinet of curiosities, and I reframe the continued juxtaposition of objects, machines, instruments and artwork that characterize the baroque cabinet to offer an explanatory construct of the early modern Hispanic world and modern Latin American literature and culture. In the first chapter of the dissertation, I contextualize the extensive theoretical discussion on Baroque and Neo-baroque within the studies of collection and curiosity. My main goal with this approach is to create a specific bibliography and understanding of Baroque as a complex process of collecting and displaying different kinds of knowledge through emotions such as wonder and marvel. In the second chapter I examine the impact of the New World on the stable "tower of knowledge" of humanists at the end of the fifteenth and the beginning of the sixteenth centuries. One definitive consequence of this impact was the questioning of the liabilities of ancient text and the need to arrange the new information, which was coming from different resources, into collections of distant and peculiar objects. Expanding this historical frame, I analyze how letrados in the seventeenth century, such as Favián, Sigüenza y Góngora, Sor Juana Inés de la Cruz, Espinoza Medrano, and Arzans Orsúa, were displaying the New World as the biggest collection of curiosities as a way of constructing an emergent criollo subjectivity. After grounding the project in the theoretical and colonial Baroque, my study turns, in the third chapter, to the modern Neo-baroque. I argue that modernity in Latin America is generated by the assimilation of the Enlightenment into a Baroque system. Therefore, Baroque in Latin America represents more than a simple or "erroneous" copy; it is rather a process of "cannibalization" and counterconquest, as José Lezama Lima proclaimed in his literary essay "Baroque Curiosity" (1957). This dissertation is written in Spanish.