Publication Date

April 2019


Cecilia Miller


College of Social Studies


English (United States)


The Chilean military coup of 1973, and the repressive regime that followed it created a transnational diaspora of over 200,000 exiles, asylum seekers, and other migrants. While there exists a great body of literature on those individuals who experienced this violence and displacement as adults, little attention has been given to how their children, the Chilean diaspora's "hinge" generation, remembers, experiences, and constructs their own narratives of loss and dislocation. This thesis aims to complicate existing narratives of loss and displacement, by centering the second generation to encourage a multivalent and heteroglossic approach to memory narratives. It investigates how the narratives of the Chilean diasporic hinge generation could be articulated and uses fiction as the vehicle for their expression. Three original short stories -- Seventy-Three in Sound and Silence, ¿Where is Raúl Ortega?, and Retornado -- form the centerpiece of this project. These stories were informed by 16 personal interviews conducted by the author with members of her family and other displaced Chileans, as well as audiovisual testimonies of displaced Chileans from the archives at el Museo de la Memoria y Derechos Humanos in Santiago, Chile. An additional two non-fiction chapters provide a historical analysis of the period in question, as well as a theoretical framework to understand the memory struggles at play, building off the scholarship of Marianne Hirsch, Elizabeth Jelin, Hannah Arendt, Michael Jackson, Roberto Bolaño, Eva Hoffman, Jean Franco, Martha Minow, Owain Jones, and Dominick LaCapra.



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