Bulletin of Hispanic Studies

Gisel Dara's Todo (1951): An Ideological Recontextualization of Carmen Laforet's Nada (1945)

Bulletin of Hispanic Studies (2014), 91, (7), 729–746.

Abstract

Todo (1951), a novel first mentioned by Calvo de Aguilar (1954) who describes it as ‘una novela réplica a Laforet’, was written under the pseudonym Gisel Dara. The Madrid author also published numerous short stories including the collection ¡Misterio! (Narraciones alucinantes) (1949). This article introduces the author and then explores her novel's extensive intertextual engagement with Nada (1945) and to a lesser degree with other well-known texts. A number of possible reasons for the author's ideologically motivated reworking of Laforet's successful novel are proposed. Todo is informed by ideological principles absent from Laforet's novel and from other novels inspired by Nada: Dara's stated aim is to depose what she considers the nihilistic Nada. Finally, the extent to which the author's political affiliations have influenced the fate of her publication is discussed and also whether she actually merits a place in Spain's literary annals.

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O'Byrne, Patricia