CERES Brown Bag Talk:
Cruel Allegories of Capitalist Crisis in Spain:
Horror Film, Cultural Trauma & Allegorical Realism
Presented by: Scott Boehm Assistant Professor of Spanish Department of Romance & Classical Studies
March 5, 2021
Via Zoom 12:00 – 1:30 pm EST
Register in advance for this meeting at THIS LINK.
Full flyer available for download HERE.
Sponsored by: Center for European, Russian, and Eurasian studies
The financial terrorism waged against the Spanish precariat during the Great Recession and the years of crisis and austerity that followed it was horrific. In 2012, mass unemployment and a merciless housing law resulted in 526 evictions a day and an 11% spike in suicides. In 2013, the unemployment rate reached 27% with one of the highest youth unemployment rates in the world at 56%. By 2014, the year cited by Spain’s National Institute of Statistics as the end of the crisis, 800,000 Spanish children had fallen below the poverty line since the onset of the crisis, an 8.3% increase from 2008. In 2017, Spain had the disgraceful distinction of becoming the EU nation with the highest level of inequality. This talk will explore how a pair of Spanish horror films – Mientras duermes (Sleep Tight, Jaume Balagueró, 2011) & Secuestrados (Kidnapped, Miguel Ángel Vivas, 2011) – allegorize the cruelty of capitalism within the context of the Spanish economic crisis, while annihilating the cruel optimism that animates neoliberal fantasies of “the good life” theorized by Lauren Berlant.