The day that Billie Holiday died (and James Dean definitely entered in literature) Lecture Series POP PHENOMENOLOGY

The day that Billie Holiday died (and James Dean definitely entered in literature)

  1. The event took place on
María Lozano


  1. María Lozano

    María Lozano es catedrática de Filología Inglesa en la Facultad de Letras de la Universidad Autónoma de Madrid. Ha sido directora del Instituto Cervantes de Nueva York de 1997 a 2000. Socia fundadora de SAAS (Spanish Association for American Studies), traductora y especialista en literatura anglosajona, ha hecho ediciones y traducciones de autores como A. Bennett, E. Hemingway, F. Scott Fitzgerald y V. Nabokov.

This title refers to an explicit title of a famous poem by Frank O'Hara, The Day Lady Died, who inaugurated in the novel, together with Salinger and others, the incorporation of shapes and myths of the popular culture in the US literary syntax. Although the relationship between popular culture and wise culture has proceeded always in America through curious paths, very different from the European practices -just think about the Western, for example-, I will try to examine the different contemporary examples of how cinema, television, jazz, rock, animated cartoons, and painting have contributed to both, the frontalization of the literary discourse and the generation of new energies based on a trivial and devaluated universe, the "trash phenomenon" in word of Donald Barthelme.The trajectory will pass the authors previously mentioned, with an inexcusable reference to the Capote of Warhol and the Marylin of Mailer, but also the Cabinet of Dr. Caligari by Barthelme, the cinephile James Purdy, and all the way to the crazy California of Thomas Pynchon's "Mucho Maas", and the use of the media discourse by Don DeLillo, until reaching the contemporary pseudo-minimalism and their use of the popular culture's "surplus value". A literary trajectory from the end of the 50's until our day, from the orality of Salinger, including a certain re-barbarization of the narrative language with a clear objective of transgression, up to the rupture that the visuals introduce in the texts that, in words of William Gass, obliges us to "seal our lips so we can listen with our eyes".