Alpha (Osorno) 40:37-52 (2015)

Abstract
El carácter de Alberto Blest Gana como fundador de la novela chilena mal podría ligarlo a la práctica del folletín, aunque registra numerosos títulos publicados en revistas y periódicos. Por lo demás, su filiación como aventajado discípulo de Balzac menos podría propiciar un vínculo con la literatura popular o de masas, como se desarrolló en Francia a mediados del siglo XIX. Y es que el canon literario nacional se construye a partir de una élite intelectual -ilustrada y liberal- que participa de la construcción social de la Nación como la que propiciaba José Victorino Lastarria y el propio Blest Gana -en sus respectivos manifiestos literarios-, en cuya conformación la cultura popular no participa más allá de un “costumbrismo” folklórico, o como un “sabor” local, o como un “pintoresquismo” para solaz de los lectores cultos. En este artículo se indaga en los formantes folletinescos en la narrativa de Blest Gana, recurriendo a las tesis acerca de la literatura popular que han sido postuladas, entre otros, por Eco ; Martín-Barbero, Herlinghaus, Sarlo. Alberto Blest Gana, the founder of the Chilean novel, could not be linked to the practice of writing feuilleton, although a number of his works published in magazines and newspapers exist. Moreover, being an outstanding disciple of Balzac would unlikely link him to the popular or mass literature, as the one developed in France in the middle of the nineteenth century. In fact, the national literary canon is built upon an intellectual elite -enlightened and liberal- that participates in the social construction of the nation as the one fostered by José Victorino Lastarria and Blest Gana -in their respective literary manifests. In their view, the popular culture does not participate beyond a folkloric “costumbrism” or as a local “taste”, or as a “picturesque trait” for the delight of the educated readers. For this reason, this article explores the melodramatic formants in Blest Gana’s narrative, by analyzing them in light of the popular literature perspectives advocated by Eco, Martín-Barbero, Herlinghaus, and Sarlo, among others
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DOI 10.4067/S0718-22012015000100004
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