Sociedad hibrida, lideres y consenso politico en Jose Maria Arguedas

Date of Award




Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.)

First Committee Member

Viviana Diaz-Balsera - Committee Chair


This research discovers a theory about the formation of the informal culture, a marginal and illegal culture, in Argueda's literary texts: "Aqua," Todas las sangres, and El zorro de arriba y el zorro de abajo. This theory shows that "Agua" represents the paradox of gamonalismo. On one hand, this power searches for a status quo. On the other hand, it produces a hybrid society, which is characterized by an arbitrary use of power, a lack of trust, an emergence of different subcultures, an extreme poverty, a grotesque, and a multiplicity of psychological, cultural, and political identities. The hybrid society is the structure for the informal culture, represented by the house of the indians, utilitarianism, lack of trust towards the official political discourse, small scale culture, collective work, and grotesque. This hybrid society and the elements of the informal culture are expressed in Willka, one of the main characters in Todas las sangres. In his discourse, we can see the utilitarianism, the lack of trust towards the formal politics, the small scale culture, and the collective work. Moreover, the informal culture also appears in the grotesque of Braulio, Cisneros, and "la jorobada." Finally, this hybrid society and the elements of the informal culture are expressed at large in Arguedas' last novel El zorro de arriba y el zorro de abajo. In this society, migrants take the streets of the city, in this case Chimbote, guided by their own needs. All this informal culture that was born in "Agua" is dramatically expressed in Moncada, Bazalar and Ramirez. Moncada represents the end of the grand narratives and the end of the Peruvian official history. Bazalar and Ramirez, as popular leaders, gather in a clearer way the logic of the informal culture. In their discourse, we see the utilitarianism, the culture of the small scale, and the collective work. For the popular leaders, the idea of nation, of state, and country are meaningless. Their discourse is focused on the small neighborhood, detached from the historical perspective. The grotesque is represented in the language and the images of Chaucato, Rincon, the prostitutes, and the people.


Literature, Latin American; Anthropology, Cultural; History, Latin American

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