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Title:Precarious embodiments: Narratives of disability and belonging in Spain of the crisis (2005-2015)
Author(s):DiFilippo, Emily
Director of Research:Delgado, Luisa Elena
Doctoral Committee Chair(s):Delgado, Luisa Elena
Doctoral Committee Member(s):Goldman, Dara; Ledesma, Eduardo; Martínez-Quiroga, Pilar; Tolliver, Joyce
Department / Program:Spanish and Portuguese
Degree Granting Institution:University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
economic crisis
contemporary Spain
Abstract:Precarious Embodiments focuses upon literary and cultural production of the Spanish State between 2005 and 2015, the precarious years of the economic crisis. I examine how differences in ability as well as gender and sexual identity work together to determine the paradigm of viable citizenship in a climate of crisis. I investigate how the requirements of binary gender and heterosexuality inform the construction of the medically-approved, able body, helping to construct a “normalized” subject—an ideal citizen whose body is capable of work and full participation in society according to traditional gender roles. I examine neoliberal capitalist ideologies of productivity and self-reliance, interrogating the way these concepts are intertwined with requirements for gendered citizenship. The unifying thread of this corpus is the representation of non-normative subjects at risk of becoming superfluous to society. It is unsurprising that these figures should abound in cultural production in time of capitalist crisis. Considering that the capitalist economy itself is destined to concentrate wealth in the hands of a few, it is inevitable that some percentage of humanity will become excessive to the system, and that this percentage will increase with a stagnation of the global flow of capital. Among those most expendable are those with disabilities who cannot participate in the labor market, and caregivers of the disabled—often women—who are also barred from “productive” work. Others who lack a valued place in industrial society include women not fulfilling the role of mother and caregiver and LGBTQ people not engaged in reproductive sexuality. In reading selected narratives of non-conformity, I ask how these vulnerable individuals are either included or excluded from notions of Spanishness, attentive to the manner in which their precarious lives tell the story of the economic crisis in Spain.
Issue Date:2018-09-11
Rights Information:Copyright 2018 Emily DiFilippo
Date Available in IDEALS:2019-02-07
Date Deposited:2018-12

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