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Perspective in Juan Goytisolo's Fiestas: Towards an Understanding of "Objectivity" in Neorealism

B. A. González
Anales de la literatura española contemporánea
Vol. 6 (1981), pp. 63-77
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/27741554
Page Count: 15
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Since scans are not currently available to screen readers, please contact JSTOR User Support for access. We'll provide a PDF copy for your screen reader.
Perspective in Juan Goytisolo's Fiestas: Towards an Understanding of "Objectivity" in Neorealism
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Abstract

The repeated recognition of "objectivity" as a distinctive feature of neorealism underscores the need to reevaluate the neorealist technique in the light of Gérard Genette's discussion of "perspective." In Juan Goytisolo's Fiestas, an example of Spanish neorealism, two perspectives emerge, but neither violates the precept of "objectivity": one is external to the characters, the other frames the action in the eyes of a participant. Perspective is of primary importance in Fiestas because of the way it structures the narrative. The abrupt changes in time or place between the chapters and sections are left unexplained. Only the transitions in perspective are made obvious. In certain cases we observe for a second time and from a different focal point an action already narrated; elsewhere we might renew our focus on a character by changing our perspective. Furthermore, the story contains certain motifs (photography, cinema, theater) that remind us of the omniscient narrator's impassivity. This portraiture of "seeing" shows that the quest for objectivity constitutes an aesthetic challenge for the novelist and that the techniques for meeting this challenge are far more complex than is generally recognized.

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