restricted access The Shadow of Maeterlinck's La Vie des abeilles and El espíritu de la colmena

No critic of El espíritu de la colmena (1973, Víctor Erice) has systematically analysed the – albeit brief – citation of the work of the Belgian prose writer and poet, Maurice Maeterlinck, although some insist that the allusion to the entire text is key. This essay seeks to explore the way in which the film subtly incorporates elements of this famous book on apiculture as a structural narrative base. Further, it also analyses the socio-historic implications of this citation/incorporation or problematic 'shadow', the dialectic and ambiguities of sacrifice and transcendence in the double context of the film's post-Civil War setting, and its construction and release in the 1970s during the Franco regime.