Female Voices in Hispanic Digital Literature

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Abstract (in English): 

This paper explores four of the most engaging female voices in Hispanic digital literature, aiming at discovering the singularity of their proposals and attempting to find patterns that will disclose, or not, the existence of a female techno-cultural identity in the field. Through the analysis of the works by Marla Jacarilla, Tina Escaja, Dora García and Teresa Martín Ezama, contained in the corpus of Ciberia: Biblioteca de Literatura Digital en Español, we will delineate the diorama of female artists at the ends of digital literature. At the ends, not only because they come from the South, the periphery of main digital literature creation centers, but because they situate themselves in hybrid artistic territories, between contemporary art and digital literature.

The main questions we want to formulate are:

Can we identify a homogenous female techno-cultural identity in the field of Hispanic digital literature? Or are the works we have gathered single-handed attempts in a cultural vacuum?
What is the space granted to gender discourses in the digital literature written by women? Do these creators share a common feminist intentionality or ideological imaginarium? Do they address similar issues, such as the inscription of a female genealogy in artistic discourses, the negotiation for a space in the new media ecology, power relations in public and private domains, the metonymy body-house, the spectrum machine-animal-human?
In what type of aesthetic categories are these works inscribed? How are they received by the audience? How would we categorize them?
Is digital literature in Spanish contributing to the creation of new female techno-cultural identities?

This review of the work of female digital literature creators in Spanish responds to two main needs. First, to make visible the difference and give a space to women artists that create and type in Spanish. Second, to analyze the strategies used by women authors to discover whether common political strategies of possibility and difference are being generated, if similar models are being propagated, or, on the other hand, if these practices are solely tied to the gender of their authors.

We will approach these questions from a comparative perspective, positioning these works besides those by female artists of digital literature in English, and contrasting their aesthetic strategies, along the lines of Jessica Pressman’s contribution “Bookish Electronic Literature” in 2014 ELO Conference. We would like to check or question whether these voices respond to a genealogy of artists and thinkers within their own culture or whether theirs has been broken, interrupted, and whether they have had to assimilate foreign referents in a process of forced self-education (with Sadie Plant, Donna Haraway, Katherine Hayles as possible godmothers). We will also establish a dialogue with their possible filiations with the world of art, technology and theory in the Spanish-speaking world (Aulália Grau, Paz Muro, Ángela Ruiz Robles, Elena Asíns, María Nuñez, Elena del Rivero, Esther Ferrer – with respect to artistic feminisms – with Escaja, Patricia Mayayo, Remedios Zafra, Carmen Navarrete, Claudia Gianetti, among others – with respect to feminist and cyberfeminist theory and criticism).

(source: ELO 2015 Conference Catalog)

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Hannah Ackermans