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Title: Subversive sex, gender, and genre in Cuban and Mexican detective fiction
Author: Peate, Ailsa Miriam
ISNI:       0000 0004 6495 812X
Awarding Body: University of Liverpool
Current Institution: University of Liverpool
Date of Award: 2017
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This thesis engages with the concepts of sex, gender, and genre in relation to detective fiction produced in Cuba and Mexico. In order to do so, it focuses on a total of 4 novels from two Cuban authors and 5 novels from Mexican writers as case studies to question and consider the extent to which cultural production from each country should be considered original in its own right. After considering both countries' socio-political backgrounds and their attitudes towards gender roles, this research suggests that Cuban detective fiction from a post-Soviet era demonstrates preoccupations with neoliberal policy and its effect on sexuality on the island, and that Mexican detective fiction seeks to foreground women's issues in a country affected by gender violence, however on occasion this intention is undercut by the limiting and limited female characters available, fuelling systemic violence. Given the focus of specific cultural realities for both societies, this thesis concludes that Cuban and Mexican detective fiction are original generic subversions, and should be considered more closely in their own right. This thesis moves beyond academic scholarship previously found in the field due to not only its focus on gendered and sexual identities within examples of Latin American detective fiction, but also as it considers the way in which such representations distort accepted archetypal norms of detective fiction. Furthermore, it coins the phrase 'detective metafiction' to refer to particularly self-aware detective fiction which incorporates historical event and fact, leading the reader to question the very basis of such novels, a highly unusual trait within a genre typically associated with truth and revelation. This research contends that the four authors whose work forms the primary texts of this thesis demonstrate clear breaks with literary and social norms in their representation of gender, sex, and genre. Chapters One and Two consider the work of Cuban authors Leonardo Padura and Amir Valle after the fall of the Soviet Union respectively, and Chapters Three and Four engage with the work of Bef and Rogelio Guedea, both whom have produced detective fiction since the inception of the War on Drugs.
Supervisor: Taylor, C. ; Harris, C. Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral