Bulletin of Hispanic Studies

Afro-porteñas in Héctor Pedro Blomberg’s Historical Romances1

Bulletin of Hispanic Studies (2015), 92, (5), 583–600.

Abstract

In the work of the Generation of 1837, the barbarous nature of General Juan Manuel de Rosas’s regime (1829–1852) is confirmed, in part, through his identification with the Afro-Argentine population. Written in the 1930s, and sometimes in conjunction with Carlos Maz Viale Paz, Héctor Pedro Blomberg’s historical romances set in the Rosas era include a number of Afro-porteña characters who address their condemning portrayal in liberal texts as willing accomplices to Rosas’s brutal regime. Even when such stereotypes are challenged, however, these Afro-porteñas have no place in a nation in which the liberal values of the Generation of 1837 are upheld. The black women must make way for their white counterparts and Blomberg’s historical romances can be read as justification for the sharp decline in the African population by the 1930s. This article examines Afro-porteña characters in the historical romances La Pulpera de Santa Lucía, La Mazorquera de Monserrat, La Guitarrera del Cerrito, La Mulata del Restaurador and in Blomberg and Viale Paz’s serialized radio drama Bajo la Santa Federación.

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REA, LAUREN