Agustín Fernández Mallo’s Nocilla Project: Seeking Affective Engagement in the World City

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Abstract

In 1961 Lewis Mumford famously proclaimed that the world had become “in many of its practical aspects, just one city” (xi). This now commonplace idea suggests an unravelling of the great modern metropolises into an extended world city, full of jumps and gaps, connected by global networks of finance, politics and culture. As many have commented, Augustin Fernández Mallo’s Nocilla Project trilogy represents a world city now also interpenetrated by digital communications1. The trilogy’s first novel Nocilla Dream was published in 2006 and almost immediately became associated with the group of writers and critics known as the Mutantes, who had been calling on Spanish authors to embrace the social and technological context of the twenty-first century. Insisting that most Spanish literature was antiquated and had lost its relevance for inhabitants of a globalized Spain, the Mutantes practiced a sort of guerrilla criticism. They pushed at the margins for visibility, stating their case in blogs, conferences on "new narrative" and books published by the small press Berenice.2 A favorable synergy formed between the group's ideas and Nocilla Dreams unexpected commercial success and the press baptized them collectively as the "Nocilla Genera tion." Fernández Mallo’s novel and the Nocilla Generation idea went viral, spreading all over the Internet and more traditional media, even getting airtime on a national nightly news program (Gabilondo).
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)31-52
Number of pages22
JournalArizona Journal of Hispanic Cultural Studies
Volume18
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2014

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