“Investigación” de los misterios familiares en el contexto de la historia reprimida (Ricardo Piglia, Edmundo Paz Soldán, Rodrigo Rey Rosa)
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This paper analyses contemporary Spanish American novels whose plots are motivated by a private investigation into the mysteries that lead to collective memory. In the second half of the 20th Century many Latin American countries were being torn apart by civil wars, guerilla wars and dictatorships. The societies in these countries (Argentina, Chile, Bolivia and Central American countries) have not yet come to terms with their personal and collective wounds and crimes. Recent history has not yet been totally restored. The official versions of history have been distorted and the heroes of the novels analyzed here begin their private investigation of facts, which leads them to uncover not only the mysteries in the recent histories of their countries, but also the political affiliations of members of their own families. As these heroes are alwayssomehow involved with writing, their para-detective search turns out to be a struggle about a discursively and textually formed identity, as well as a negotiation of values between the public and the private, between official historiography and the memory of individuals and their families, between the traditional and postmodern sense of patriotism. This process illustrates that in some contemporary Latin American societies, conflicts between the accepted version of history and marginalized private memory correspond to the postcolonial model of identity problems. Key words: Contemporary Spanish American novel, detective story, identity, postcolonial studies.
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