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Algunas figuraciones del trabajo literario en la narrativa contemporánea del Cono Sur

  • Alejandra Laera Universidad de Buenos Aires-CONICET
Keywords writing and body, intellectual and physical labor, fictions of labor, Southern Cone Literature, representations of writers
Keywords writing and body, intellectual and physical labor, fictions of labor, Southern Cone Literature, representations of writers


This article aims to approach a comprehensive set of contemporary narratives by acknowledging the writer's activity in terms of 'work' and, consequently, focusing on the ways the writer's body exhibits such work. I intend to regain the concept of 'work' as a paramount frame of reference to think both literary productions and writers' views, so as to link different perspectives regarding the writers' activities (e.g., sociological, historical and culturalist approaches) with those theoretical inquiries concerning the connection between writing and the topic of the body (such as textualist, deconstructionist and Benjaminian approaches).

To do so, I will examine a broad spectrum of works. From Ricardo Piglia's Los diarios de Emilio Renzi, Maria Moreno's Black outand Mario Levrero's La novela luminosato Juan José Becerra's El artista más grande del mundo, Lina Meruane's Sangre en el ojoand Sergio Chejfec's Últimas noticias de la esctritura. There, I propose to highlight the relation between writers, work and body through these writers' imagination, either in terms of self-representation, fiction or documentalism.

From this perspective, the article explores how specific uses and placements of a body in a writing situation could be thought or perceived, throughout its routine, as a 'working-body'; hence, as a body that is part of a productive process that entails, eventually, a monetary compensation. The former brings up to the question of whether the writer's body could be considered as a workforce. Also, if so: What types of representations do the writers mentioned above create concerning that matter? What notions of literature and views of their social role do they intend or imply in doing so?

Author Biography

Alejandra Laera, Universidad de Buenos Aires-CONICET

Alejandra Laera (PhD in Literature, Universidad de Buenos Aires) is Professor of Argentine Literature at Universidad de Buenos Aires and Independent Researcher for the National Council of Scientific and Technical Research (CONICET). She has been a visiting professor at universities both in Argentina and abroad (Wesleyan, Stanford, UPCRJ, UNR). She is the author of El tiempo vacío de la ficción. Las novelas argentinas de Eduardo Gutiérrez y Eugenio Cambaceres (Fondo de Cultura Económica, 2004) and of Ficciones del dinero. Argentina, 1890-2001 (FCE, 2014), as well as the director of El brote de los géneros (Emecé, 2010), the third volume of Historia crítica de la literatura argentina. She has put together several editions of Argentine classics and co-edited various collections (among them, Las brújulas del extraviado. Para una lectura integral de Esteban Echeverría (2006) and Fronteras escritas. Cruces, desvíos y pasajes en la literatura argentina (2008)). In addition, she currently directs the Viajeros series for the FCE, and she is in the care of the Argentinian Classics series for Pengüin Mondadori.

Dossier: El cuerpo del trabajo: Fuerza