MONSTRUOS FAMILIARES: REPRESENTACIONES DEL MIEDO EN LA GUERRA CIVIL Y LA POSGUERRA EN LA LITERATURA Y EL CINE ESPAÑOL CONTEMPORÁNEO
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This dissertation studies the cultural traces of the experience of fear in relation to the social and cultural legacies of the Spanish Civil War and the Francoist dictatorship. By applying the theoretical and narratological insights afforded by the horror genre and through the figure of the monster, the research identifies and analyzes alternative memories of the traumatic past, exploring the experience of fear within film and literature to reveal and claim an unrecognized approach to the representation of the war, with key critical findings and implications regarding the shaping and interpretation of the Spanish social imaginary of this event in this most persistent of cultural debates. Chapter II, explores the maquis in Luna de lobos (1985) by Julio Llamazares, tracing the human involution of a group of men that seeking refuge from Francoist repression become monstrous shells of themselves. It pursues this degradation to rethink the locus of the monster, finding it in the monstrous policies of the regime, that demands the exorcism of the resistance movement—the ultimate Other—rendering it ghostly by community and family as the cornerstone foundational violence of a new society. Chapter III, delves into the cinematographic representation of monsters and monstrous elements in Pa negre (2010) by Agustí Villaronga. It studies the competing narratives in postwar Spain that turn a child of the defeated into a monstrous regime supporter, a process that suggests the origins of contemporary society as the monstrous traces of Francoist society. It analyzes the features that render its protagonist, first, a monster in the eyes of the new regime—along the lines of the classical monster—to later on, through disappointment, shame and betrayal, a monster to his family and social class—thus becoming a modern monster. Chapter IV tackles a cinematographic allegorical representation of the past in Balada triste de trompeta (2010) by Álex de la Iglesia, a tour de force that attempts to be a total narrative of the war, a collage of historical memory through the monstrous moments that define Francoism. The fusion of elements from “esperpento”, horror and melodramatic national romance render a unique postnational satire.