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dc.contributor.authorFell, Rebecca
dc.date.accessioned2022-01-05T02:37:21Z
dc.date.available2022-01-05T02:37:21Z
dc.date.submitted2021-08-02
dc.identifier.urihttps://www.repository.cam.ac.uk/handle/1810/331974
dc.description.abstractThis dissertation focuses on ‘chisme’ or ‘gossip’ as theme, plot device and narrative dynamic in four canonical realist novels of the Spanish Restoration of the 1880s by Emilia Pardo Bazán (Chapter 1), Benito Pérez Galdós (Chapter 2) and Leopoldo Alas (‘Clarín’) (Chapter 3). An Introduction presents a theoretical analysis and framework of chisme, beginning with its definition and etymology, and considers the historical moment (the Spanish Restoration). It also draws on the fields of anthropology and psychology (Dunbar and Foster), philosophy (Foucault and Adkins) and sociology (Bourdieu), and literary theory (Bakhtin) to define gossip in terms of its core purpose (information-sharing, segregation and distancing, connection and bonding, or all simultaneously). This study argues that, when viewed as gossip, these texts are at their most powerful. They dialogue with and bond, confound and distance readers, alerting them to hidden intentions. They point to the epistemological value of gossip as a form of knowledge, and as a metaphor for the Spanish realist text. Their reproduction and troubling of social norms echo the multiple dual-faceted dynamics of gossip: knowledge/power, schism/bonding, differentiation/homogenisation, totalisation/fragmentation, speculation/substantiation, among others. Chapter 1 on Emilia Pardo Bazán’s Los Pazos de Ulloa and La madre Naturaleza examines gossip’s role in apportioning blame and stereotyping, and marginalising others. In a form of gender revenge, Pardo Bazán turns on its head the stereotypical belittling of women and women’s discourse as gossips and gossip, and exposes male anxiety around gossip and status. In Chapter 2, I posit that in Fortunata y Jacinta Galdós uses an economy of gossip to create bonds between his characters, to bond readers to character groups and to question the patriarchal status quo. Using the theories of Pierre Bourdieu on the bourgeois construction of social distinction through displays of material wealth and other visible ‘signs’ of power and influence, I argue that gossip about Fortunata points to the interdependency of the social and symbolic capital (‘status’) of the bourgeoisie and working classes (‘el pueblo’). Chapter 3 analyses gossip as a form of tale-telling in Clarín’s La Regenta. I propose that the narrator is the personification of a nasty gossip, whose exposition, privately to readers, of the characters’ shortcomings and vices, duplicity, deception and hypocrisy, serves as a mimetic echo of their tale-telling and backbiting. The narrator’s gossip strategies are emotive, designed to provoke feelings of distaste, disgust and displeasure, sensations and perceptions far more difficult than pleasure to disavow or ignore. All four texts expose the power relations between narrator and reader. The triangle of desire that exists between narrator, reader, and characters mirrors that of gossiper, interlocutor, and target of gossip.
dc.rightsAll Rights Reserved
dc.rights.urihttps://www.rioxx.net/licenses/all-rights-reserved/
dc.subject'chisme'
dc.subjectgossip
dc.subjectthe Spanish realist novel
dc.subjectknowledge/power
dc.subjectschism/bonding
dc.subjectdifferentiation/homogenisation
dc.subjecttotalisation/fragmentation
dc.subjectspeculation/substantiation
dc.subjectblame stories
dc.subjectstereotyping
dc.subjectbourgeois practices of social distinction
dc.subjecttale-telling
dc.titleNegotiating Gossip in the Spanish Realist Novel
dc.typeThesis
dc.type.qualificationlevelDoctoral
dc.type.qualificationnameDoctor of Philosophy (PhD)
dc.publisher.institutionUniversity of Cambridge
dc.date.updated2022-01-04T14:14:34Z
dc.identifier.doi10.17863/CAM.79423
rioxxterms.licenseref.urihttps://www.rioxx.net/licenses/all-rights-reserved/
dc.contributor.orcidFell, Rebecca [0000-0002-0754-281X]
rioxxterms.typeThesis
dc.publisher.collegeSt Catharines
pubs.funder-project-idAHRC (1647654)
cam.supervisorEpps, bradley
cam.supervisorSinclair, alison
cam.depositDate2022-01-04
pubs.licence-identifierapollo-deposit-licence-2-1
pubs.licence-display-nameApollo Repository Deposit Licence Agreement
rioxxterms.freetoread.startdate2023-01-05


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