Rereading Alves Redol’s O Cavalo Espantado: Literary Negotiations of the Refugee Crisis during World War II and Mnemonic Discourses in Portugal

Resultado de pesquisarevisão de pares


The aim of this paper is to explore the relationship of crisis and the cultural memory of World War II refugees in Portugal based on the analysis of Alves Redol’s novel O Cavalo Espantado (1960). During World War II Lisbon became one of the most important zones of transit for refugees fleeing Nazi persecution and war. Lisbon is usually described as save haven and symbol of hope. While the topic has received considerable attention since the 1990ies, it was almost absent from the public sphere during the Estado Novo (1933-1974). Alves Redol’s novel O Cavalo Espantado is one of the very few literary texts focusing explicitly on the refugees’ presence in Portugal’s capital, which was published before 1974. The first part of the paper focuses on the concept of crisis in its relationship to how the refugees’ presence is represented in the novel. Is the sudden inflow of foreigners conceptualized and conceived as a “crisis” and what insides does the concept of “crisis” provide in the context of mnemonic processes in Portugal in general? The second part of the paper draws on Susan Rubin Suleiman’s (2006:1) notion of “crisis of memory” as “a moment of choice, and sometimes of predicament or conflict” concerning the way ”we represent ourselves” and “the stories we tell about our past”. Here the paper explores the relationship of O Cavalo Espantado with discursive processes of Othering and collective identity construction in Portugal.
Idioma originalUndefined/Unknown
Estado da publicaçãoPublicado - 27 out. 2016
EventoLiterature and Crises: Conceptual Explorations and Literary Negotiations - University of Giessen, Giessen
Duração: 26 out. 201628 out. 2016


ConferênciaLiterature and Crises