This paper will explore liminality in Carmen Laforet’s Nada and Ana María Matute’s Primera memoria by comparing the remembered experiences of their female narrators as they try to come to terms with the traumatic legacy of the Spanish Civil War. In each novel the protagonists spend time in surrogate familial environments that teach them about the paradoxes and complexities of a war-ridden society. Just as Spain transforms from a progressive republic to a totalitarian state, Andrea and Matia’s narratives examine their own evolving sense of self, for they are no longer girls but still not quite yet women. As they describe their respective memories, they learn a great deal about the relationships between gender, power, the family, and the reconfiguration of identity.
This paper is part of a pre-organized panel submitted by Professor Lisa Nalbone. The title of the panel is "Expanding the Conceptual Framework of Liminal Spaces: Literature, Culture, and Film in 20th Century Spain"
- Spanish Peninsular Studies