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By Persephone Braham

The transplanted, inherently glossy detective style serves as a particularly powerful lens for exposing the fissures and divergences of modernity in post-1968 Mexico and innovative Cuba. Combining in-depth serious analyses with the theoretical insights of present literary and cultural idea and Latin American postmodern reviews, Crimes opposed to the nation, Crimes opposed to individuals exhibits how the Cuban novela negra examines the Revolution via an incisive chronicle of lifestyles lower than a decaying regime, and the way the Mexican neopoliciaco unearths the oppressive politics of modernization and globalization in Latin the USA. foreign in scope, comparative in procedure, Braham’s learn provides a distinct inquiry into the moral and aesthetic complexities that Latin American authors face in adapting style detective fiction—a sleek, metropolitan model—to considerably diversified artistic and ideological courses. contemplating the paintings of writers corresponding to Leonardo Padura Fuentes and Paco Ignacio Taibo II, in addition to such English-language impacts as G. okay. Chesterton and Chester Himes, Braham additionally addresses Marxist evaluations of the tradition and emergent Latin American innovations of postmodernity.

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Additional resources for Crimes against the State, Crimes against Persons: Detective Fiction in Cuba and Mexico

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The novelistic Cuban spy rarely suffers the ethical isolation of John Le Carré’s or Graham Greene’s spies. Like James Bond, he is supported by an army of professionals whose ideology matches his own. He demonstrates none of the frivolity of the gentleman spy, nor, on the face of things, Bond’s implicit misogyny (like hard-boiled femmes fatales, the women in Bond novels die in large numbers). 56 This is certainly true of the Cuban detective novel, where the emphasis on the effectiveness of police procedure, on one hand, and the visibility of the criminal on the other rules out the use of traditional devices such as the red herring that protect the true solution from the reader.

The Cuban spy genre depicts infiltration from A REVOLUTIONARY AESTHETIC | 37 the outside, usually by the CIA. The novelistic Cuban spy rarely suffers the ethical isolation of John Le Carré’s or Graham Greene’s spies. Like James Bond, he is supported by an army of professionals whose ideology matches his own. He demonstrates none of the frivolity of the gentleman spy, nor, on the face of things, Bond’s implicit misogyny (like hard-boiled femmes fatales, the women in Bond novels die in large numbers).

Fernández Retamar’s famous 1971 essay Calibán linked the sociological discussion of the fi n de siècle inextricably with contemporary literary discourse. A response to José Enrique Rodó’s seminal Ariel (1900), Calibán emphasized the decadence of the United States and the raw vigor of the Caribbean nation. Fernández Retamar defended the “volcanic violence” of Castro’s speech closing the 1971 Primer Congreso Nacional de Educación y Cultura, which condemned homosexuality and formalism, against the criticism of intellectuals who saw it as a deformation of revolutionary zeal.

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