The objects of this conference will be the profound triggers of an incomparable art and of its intimate relation with a reflexion that subdued the fundamental impulses of the newborn Modernity, which the playwright from Madrid experienced himself, to a harsh critic. Theatrical poetry and and thought merge in a work where there is a miraculous conspiracy between the "imagined concept" and the "practical concept", the act of writing, and its scenery.
Reactionary, conformist and orthodox; or libertine, subversive and skeptic; poet of the Inquisition or atheist playwright, depending on the personal tastes of whoever has interpreted him along the last four centuries, Calderón worried about representing and elucidating the problems of evil and liberty, as well as the insatiable and devilish appetite for certainty that controls the rational will of this period of time. At the same time, he is the great playwright of Catholicism; poet of the faith and the mystery of the Eucharist, the sanctity and martyrdom. The character inhabiting his comedies, the most fun and enjoyable of all of the European literature, and the protagonist of the tragedies that shake order and entropy, certainty and doubt, syllogism and the abyss.
The unconditional absolute faith, piety, reverence, and awe cohabit with skepticism and the problematic nature of the author's thoughts in works with titles such as No hay mas fortuna que Dios, En la vida todo es verdad y todo mentira, Lo que va del hombre a Dios, No hay que creer ni en la verdad, La devoción de la cruz, Gustos y disgustos son solo imaginación, No hay instante sin milagro and La vida es sueño. The variety of theatrical genres which he cultivated allowed him to explore from different perspectives the fate of the profane and earthly characters, either in a comic or tragic tone, and the destiny designed by providence. Calderón places his characters on a theatre in which they are obliged to play roles within a given script in which they feel trapped and fight to understand. Awed by the painful doubts, they do not cease to ask about the sense of existence and attempt to solve the enigmas of destiny, an overabundance of queries that can be summarized in the questions what is life?, what is belief? Calderón the great theatrical chronicler of the nihilistic process characterizing the modern period in which we still live.