Bulletin of Hispanic Studies

The Migrant in Revolutionary Times: César Vega Herrera’s El ascensor (1968)

Bulletin of Hispanic Studies (2018), 95, (3), 327–336.

Abstract

Written during the playwright’s migration to Lima and performed during the first years of the Velasco Alvarado dictatorship in Peru, El ascensor by César Vega Herrera portrays the struggles that migrants face in forging new lives in Peru’s capital. El ascensor is absent from the existing debates on the Peruvian theatre of the 1960s and 1970s, making the work a forgotten piece of the nation’s theatre history. The play criticizes the revolutionary promises of the Velasco Alvarado dictatorship, and the epoch in general, and places them in contrast with the ignored material needs of the country’s migratory urban poor represented through the trials of its main character, Fortunato. This article includes a critical framework on the absurd and internal migration in Peru to highlight the play’s treatment of politics and migration in the country.

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Author details

Barnard, Mary