Suecia, o la torre de Babel : Análisis de las imágenes de Suecia en la novela El camino a Ítaca de Carlos Liscano
The focus of this study is to investigate what images of Sweden are transmitted in the novel The road to Ithaca (1994), by the Uruguayan author Carlos Liscano. The study focuses on the first half part of the novel for this taking place in Stockholm, Sweden, in the early nineties. The aim is to investigate by what literary strategies and literary subgenres the images of Sweden are transmitted.
The theoretical framework applied derives from studies of the literary genre of the picaresque noveland its bufonesco mood, such as the literary strategies irony and laconism. For the analysis Mieke Bal´s concept of focalizationand semantic axesare used.
The study shows that in Sweden there are parallel worlds to the official world of the welfare state; in the shadow side of society there are the metecos, unwanted residents: the undocumented and the mentally ill. Through a picaresque and ironic style, the author shows that Sweden is a neat, clean, but culturally hermetic society; almost perfect on the surface, but with a lot of hidden “trash” beneath.
The welfare state of Sweden seams benevolent in its integrative intention, but is, at the same time, blind, or even worse, disinterested in the new reality of the country; that of the welfare state in dissolution and Sweden as a Tower of Babel.
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