restricted access Nómadas, desempleados y suicidas: racionalidad neoliberal y subjetividades alternas en la literatura centroamericana de posguerra


In this article, I argue that Central American postwar literature—rather than expressing cynicism, affliction or disenchantment as some critics have argued— reveals, questions, and resists the shift in the locus of sovereign power from the political to the economic sphere, which is the result of the consolidation of neoliberalism as the governing rationality and the ensuing economization of all domains of life. Given this context, I claim that the parameters of inclusion and exclusion no longer stem from ideological or political affinities, as was the case during the revolutionary decades, but depend instead on the ability and willingness of the subject to (1) compete and participate in the free market as producer, worker, and/or consumer; and (2) internalize the alleged moral and ethical precepts by means of which neoliberal rationality constructs both the subject and life in common. I therefore argue that the prominent presence in this literary production of subjectivities such as the nomad, the unemployed and the suicide—subjectivities that in one way or another manage to escape neoliberal logic and morality—is not only symptomatic of this change in the locus of sovereignty and the construction of the subject, but also politically critical of it. What is at stake in this literary production is no longer the re-signification of the past, but rather the articulation of the present itself and a different future in which the subject is no longer conceived of and constructed as a mere homo oeconomicus.