Un estudio analítico de Elena Soriano y su cuentística en La vida pequeña y Tres sueños y otros cuentos



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The conditions many writers face in Spain under Franco cover nearly forty years of complexity, discrimination, hardship and censorship. These writers, including Camilo José Cela, Ana María Matute, Carmen Laforet, Carmen Martín Gaite, Elena Soriano, among others, writers from many different social and political backgrounds, each with his or her own ideology marked by his or her own special circumstances, e.g. interior or exterior exiles, born a woman. This study focuses on Elena Soriano, a Spanish woman writer, and her collections of short stories. In order to better understand Soriano’s short stories, it is indispensable to have knowledge of the world in which she lived.

Women experienced severe restrictions, laws, censorship, inequalities and punishments from 1939 to 1975, after the Spanish Civil War and during the Franco regime. The relationships between men and women were greatly affected by the existing laws during Franco’s regime. Thus, Soriano’s short stories contain themes ranging from the traditional role of women (in Spain), the patriarchal society, treatment of women, to the lack or inability to communicate, poverty, among others. During Franco Spain, divorce did not exist; adultery was a crime for women alone; awards were given to the family with the most children; shortages of everything prevailed, and of course xenophobia.

It is also important to understand Soriano’s philosophy on short stories which are expressed in her essays published in 1988 and 1990. It is also important to study the poetics and theories of the short story by Brander Matthews, Erna Brandenberger, Frank O’Connor, Ana Rueda, among others in order to understand the broad picture of the scheme. Soriano’s short stories are analyzed using these theories within the context of the situation confronted during Franco and post-Franco Spain. This dissertation also includes brief information about Soriano’s other works: her novels and her literary journal El Urogallo.