Peripheral (Post) Modernity: The Syncretist Aesthetics of Borges, Piglia, Kalokyris and Kyriakidis
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Are there such things as peripheral modernity and postmodernity? This groundbreaking book focuses on the notions of modernity and postmodernity in two countries that never before have been studied comparatively: Argentina and Greece. It examines theories of the postmodern and the problems involved in applying them to the hybrid and sui generis cultural phenomena of the «periphery». Simultaneously it offers an exciting insight into the work of Jorge Luis Borges, Ricardo Piglia, Dimitris Kalokyris and Achilleas Kyriakidis, whose syncretist aesthetics are symptomatic of the mixing up of different and often opposed aesthetic principles and traditions that occur in «peripheral» locations. This book will be very useful to scholars and students of Latin American, Modern Greek and comparative literature as well as to those interested in Borges studies.
Eurocentric self-confidence. In postmodernity, the periphery as the Other (of the centre) both asks for legitimation for its own accounts of modernity and forces the centre to see The Case of Argentina and Greece | 35 itself “through the prism” of the periphery. The historical practice of the project of modernity in peripheral countries reveals not only the heterogeneity and hybridity inherent in modernities produced within the periphery but it also makes us consider that European and North
lost idyllic rural life. Besides, they both underscore a sense of rootlessness, which was experienced by the European immigrants—in the case of tango—and by the refugees of the Asia Minor—in the case of ´␣. Having dealt with the internal front and the quest for continuity between the past and the present, the Generation of the ’30s also had to handle the external front: that of Europe. Since Greekness had to accommodate the dual identity of the Greeks, the intellectual élite of the ’30s,
simulacra is that of fantasy (ficciones). This is because fantasy does not ask us to believe it; on the contrary, it continuously exposes its fictitious nature. Paradoxically enough fantasy then becomes the space of realism par excellence. Like the metaphysicians of the fantastic planet of Tlön, Borges looks for Aristotelian “astonishment”: Los metafísicos de Tlön no buscan la verdad ni siquiera la verosimilitud: buscan el asombro. Juzgan que la metafísica es una rama de la literatura fantástica.
supposedly wrote in his notebook in the early 1980s when he started translating Borges’ books. He writes, referring to Borges’ “La busca de Averroes”: O M´ ᒎ ␥␣ᒎ ´ ´ ␣ A␤ᒎ´ , ´ ␣ ᒎ´ ᒎ ᒎ␦´ ´ ␣ ␥’␣´ и A␤ᒎ´ ᒎ␣␣ᒎ ´ “⌸´” Aᒎ´ , ´␣ ᒎ␣␣ ´ ␣ ᒎ´␣␣ ᒎ´ ␣´ ᒎᒎ´ , ␣ ␣␦␣ᒎ´ ␣ ´␣␤ᒎ ´ ␣ ᒎ´ ᒎ ␦´ ␣ ␣ ␣␥␦´ ␣, ᒎ´ ᒎ ␣ ´ ␣ᒎ ´
aesthetics of Piglia who understands fiction as the maker of the future. Piglia has repeatedly referred to his notion of the relato futuro, a text that registers the (by definition absent) future: the realities that are absent from and alternative to the present reality. In his essay “Ficción y política en la literatura Argentina”, he claims that la novela no expresa a ninguna sociedad sino como negación y contrarrealidad. La literatura siempre es inactual, dice en otro lugar, a destiempo, la