Dissertations, Theses, and Capstone Projects

Date of Degree


Document Type


Degree Name



Latin American, Iberian and Latino Cultures


Malva Filer

Committee Members

Silvia Dapía

Magdalena Perkowska

Subject Categories

Arts and Humanities | Modern Languages | Modern Literature


Latin American Literature


This dissertation examines three novels of Mario Levrero, which have an unnamed first-person narrator, and his autobiographical-essay-memoir type of works. The novels, known as the “involuntary trilogy”, have been considered by many as a kind that belongs to the subgenre of the fantastic. In both types of literature, we agreed that Husserlian phenomenology was an unavoidable and substantial frame for any discussion. The part of the fictional narrative considered here, by its plots, themes, narrator and characters, vocabulary and concepts, brought us to observe parallelisms with phenomenology as a discipline and body of knowledge, and as a process and attitude. Phenomenological and Freudian terms and discussions are also present in the autobiographical works. In this dissertation we found, applied to the literary artifacts and discourse, the specifically phenomenological concepts of bracketing, abandonment of the natural attitude, eidetic variation, epochē, uninterested or disinterested spectator, essences, noesis, noema, and others. The novels depict a protagonist narrator in worlds with different levels of unreality, often in a schizoid, metaphysically anguished mental state. Nevertheless, these literary unrealities are nested on very real facts; we analyze its cultural, sociohistorical substratum. The investigation about the personality and circumstance of the narrators took us toward the path of the theories of several contemporary philosophers and psychiatrists, many related to phenomenology. In this dissertation are found, interrelated, mysticism, phenomenology, the schizoid and even, given the texts we study and among some other subject matters, mathematics, paradoxes, and philosophy of mind. All of these, with the Self and its volitions, are the point of departure in the study of Levrero’s literature.