Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)


Comparative Literature (Interdepartmental Program)

Document Type



This dissertation seeks to contribute to the understanding of the formation of collective memory of State violence in Argentina, Chile, and Mexico. By comparing these three cases, I pursue to discern how citizens can challenge the silence and amnesia that the groups in power want to impose on society after a period of State terrorism. In order to examine the process of formation of collective memory, this dissertation highlights two important figures from which citizens have been able to build counter-hegemonic narratives, that is, los exiliados and los desaparecidos. I will highlight how they become lenses through which citizens can construct the memory of State repression. They become the evidence of the repression that the State wants to conceal, and have the potential of becoming important symbolic figures, and sources of knowledge, from which society can challenge silence and oblivion about State terrorism. The unfolding of the objectives and arguments of this dissertation are based on the analysis of literary texts from Argentina, Chile, and Mexico; and on photography of Argentinian and Mexican photographers. I draw on performance studies, anthropological approaches to ritual, and literary criticism to examine how citizens create counter-hegemonic narratives of State repression, and how they incorporate them in the collective memory of their societies.



Document Availability at the Time of Submission

Release the entire work immediately for access worldwide.

Committee Chair

Martins, Laura