I am in the first year of my PhD research, which is funded by the Northern Bridge Doctoral Training Partnership. My research interests lie primarily in Spanish costumbrista literature. Before beginning doctoral research, my MRes dissertation examined the representation of Madrid in the artículos de costumbres of Romantic journalist Mariano José de Larra (1809-37) through different public spaces of sociability, using Mikhail Bakhtin's 'Chronotope' concept as a methodological approach. My PhD research develops on my MRes investigation by addressing Spanish costumbrista literature at the end of the Enlightenment period that preceded the establishment of the genre of costumbrismo in the 1830s with writers such as Larra and Mesonero Romanos. Specifically, my project focuses on the period of the reign of Carlos IV (1788-1808), addressing works of costumbrista style and articles in the daily periodical Diario de Madrid. My investigation is at an early stage, but current research questions include:
- In what ways do these early costumbrista works reflect conflicting mentalities in regard to tradition and modernity?
- How are the urban trnasformations of eighteenth-century Madrid represented in early costumbrista literature?
- What are the different social types in costumbrista literature and how are they characterised?
- To what extent did the daily Madrid periodical Diario de Madrid contribute to the development of the genre of costumbrismo?
To address these research questions, I will be drawing on methodological approaches related to nationalism, gender studies, crime and punishment, as well as consulting digitised instalments of the Diario de Madrid from 1788-1808.
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