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Document Type

Dissertation

Degree

Doctor of Philosophy

Department

Modern Language Education

Advisor's Name

Erik Camayd-Freixas

Advisor's Title

Major Professor

Advisor's Name

Ana María Bidegain

Advisor's Name

Reynaldo Sánchez

Date of Defense

7-27-2009

Abstract

My research attempts to demonstrate how Sábato’s essays have pursued a progressive path that reflects the evolving process of his vision. In light of his essays, I will delineate the themes of solitude, death, desperation, robotization of man, and finally, hope as the antithesis. In my analysis I examine the model created in Sartre’s Existentialism. I also visit the model followed by Nicholas Berdyaeff, who at least offers the possibility of salvation in a world conceived by and for Nothingness. I investigate how these and other tendencies had an initial influence on the essays studied in my research. I concentrate on those essays whose discourse is conditioned by the philosophical foundations of a being that inquires and discerns, discovers and denounces, and finally struggles with the impossibility of reaching the absolute. This foresight, at times apocalyptic, at times utopian, is already present in Sábato’s early works. In my study I attempt to establish how Sábato, in oscillating between the demonic and the romantic, the infernal and utopian, constructs his vision of the world through the symbiotic intertwining of both the fictional and essayistic genres. I focus on an author compromised by a constant debate with the paradoxes and dichotomies that, according to Sábato himself, define Modernity.

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