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June 28 , 2008

Macho Ethics

Masculinity and Self-Representation in Latino-Caribbean Narrative


Masculinity is not a monolithic phenomenon, but a historically discontinuous one—a fabrication as it were, of given cultural circumstances. Because of its opacity and instability, masculinity, like more recognizable systems of oppression, resists discernibility. In Macho Ethics: Masculinity and Self-Representation in Latino-Caribbean Narrative, Jason Cortés seeks to reveal the inner workings of masculinity in the narrative prose of four major Caribbean authors: the Cuban Severo Sarduy; the Dominican American Junot Díaz; and the Puerto Ricans Luis Rafael Sánchez and Edgardo Rodríguez Juliá. By exploring the relationship between ethics and authority, the legacies of colonial violence, the figure of the dictator, the macho, and the dandy, the logic of the Archive, the presence of Oscar Wilde, and notions of trauma and mourning, Macho Ethics fills a gap surrounding issues of power and masculinity within the Caribbean context, and draws attention to what frequently remains invisible and unspoken.

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