Spain? Europe? America? Spanish exiles in France and the Spanish-American Press
Europa! Europa? First Bi-Annual Conference of the European Network for Avant-Garde and Modernism (EAM) location:Universiteit Gent date:29-31 mei 2008
Exile writing is often seen as a locus of interculturality, characterized by the interaction between the culture of origin of the exile and the host culture. This paper focuses on the more complex tricultural relations in the texts of Spanish Civil War exiles residing in France and publishing in the Spanish-American Press. The concept of “scenography” (Maingueneau) will allow me to analyse how these authors posit or “stage” themselves in this complex communicative scene through the construction of the figures of the speaker and co-speaker, of time and place. I will study the representation of and the relations established between Spanish, French/European and Spanish-American culture in the (mainly essayistic) writings published in leading Spanish-American newspapers during and shortly after the war by Spanish authors such as José Ortega y Gasset, Pío Baroja, Gregorio Marañón, Ramón Gómez de la Serna and Francisco Ayala.
A first analysis, based on part of the corpus, seems to indicate that these authors, despite a wide-spread (pan)hispanist discourse focussing on Spanish cultural specificity and on the cultural affinities between Spain and her “daughter nations”, don’t engage primarily in a dialogue with the Spanish-American cultures. Instead, their discourse relates more closely to the French/European host culture, which they often conceive as “modern”, “educated” or “cultivated” and sharing a common history.