Echoes of existentialism in the works of Carlos Fuentes

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dc.contributor.advisor Finnegan, Nuala en Aylward, Patrick 2015-09-02T12:27:08Z 2015-09-02T12:27:08Z 2015 2015
dc.identifier.citation Aylward, P. 2015. Echoes of existentialism in the works of Carlos Fuentes. PhD Thesis, University College Cork. en
dc.identifier.endpage 193
dc.description.abstract In this thesis I have set out to trace the echoes of existentialism in the work of the Mexican novelist, Carlos Fuentes scrutinizing, in particular, La región más transparente, La muerte de Artemio Cruz and Cambio de piel. In the opening segment of the thesis I outline the essential tenets of existentialist thought and how it became the predominant philosophical and literary movement of the early part of the twentieth-century. Stemming from the work of Sören Kierkegaard in Denmark towards the end of the nineteenth-century, it challenged the arid philosophies of previous generations and provided a new way of looking at man and the human condition. In this opening chapter, I study the works of the more important philosophers in this regard such as Heidegger, Sartre, Jaspers, Marcel, Unamuno, and Ortega y Gasset and show how each in his own way contributed to the further development of the new philosophy. Chapter 2 is concerned with the spread of existentialism to the Latin American continent. In the early part of the twentieth-century, Mexico was emerging from a turbulent revolutionary period and seeking a solution to the fractured nature of its society. The Spanish philosopher, Ortega y Gasset, and the many Spanish intellectuals who sought refuge from Franco’s dictatorship in Mexico, helped to popularise the new philosophy and these lively debates about existentialism served to underpin ideas around mexicanidad or Mexican national identity. Carlos Fuentes was deeply immersed in the debate of his time, positioned as he was as a prominent public intellectual. In La muerte de Artemio Cruz he shows us how great wealth and power are a poor recompense for the loss of love and compassion and lead only to alienation and selfishness. In his other best known novel, La región más transparente, he explores the rise of modern Mexico and its society – an inauthentic society that is corrupted by a scramble for wealth and self-aggrandizement. The final chapter is devoted to the study of Cambio de piel which is concerned with violence and alienation as central pillars of existence. The violence depicted here precipitates a crisis in the human condition and an accompanying sense of alienation. The thesis seeks to establish that existentialism is central not only to Fuentes’s literary concerns but also forms a part of his ethics as an artist. en
dc.format.mimetype application/pdf en
dc.language.iso en en
dc.publisher University College Cork en
dc.rights © 2015, Patrick Aylward en
dc.rights.uri en
dc.subject Existentialism en
dc.subject Carlos Fuentes en
dc.subject Mexican revolution en
dc.subject Latin American philosophy en
dc.title Echoes of existentialism in the works of Carlos Fuentes en
dc.type Doctoral thesis en
dc.type.qualificationlevel Doctoral en
dc.type.qualificationname PhD (Arts) en
dc.internal.availability Full text available en No embargo required en
dc.description.version Accepted Version
dc.description.status Not peer reviewed en Hispanic Studies en
dc.check.type No Embargo Required
dc.check.reason No embargo required en
dc.check.opt-out Not applicable en
dc.thesis.opt-out false
dc.check.embargoformat Not applicable en
dc.internal.conferring Autumn Conferring 2015

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