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Bridging the Gaps in Cultural Memory: Carlos Gorostiza's El puente, and Gabriel Peveroni's Sarajevo esquina Montevideo (El puente)

Sarah M. Misemer
2005 Latin American Theatre Review  
Bridges, at the most basic level, are what unite the diverse works of Carlos Gorostiza and Gabriel Peveroni in their most well-known plays, El puente and Sarajevo esquina Montevideo (El puente). These two River Plate authors employ the image of the bridge with very similar aims by providing critical commentary on the socio-political elements that envelop the ensuing plots, and by extension the times in which these plays were written. Furthermore, the bridges that occupy the imaginations of the
more » ... maginations of the characters also function as metaphorical connectors, holding together plot, structure and message. Because the bridges are never really seen in either of the plays, the absent but present quality of these markers also reminds the actors and public alike of the metatheatrical and performative nature of history and behavior within the sphere of cultural memory. In both Gorostiza's and Peveroni's plays, this act of remembering occurs through repetition and restored behavior manifested throughout the dramatic action in dialogue, gestures and other staging devices. The reiterative quality of these enacted behaviors will be observed through various lenses of performance theory. Specifically, in the case of Gorostiza's play, this analysis examines the doubling that occurs as part of the mimetic quality of theatre. Political reforms enacted in real life in Argentina will be examined as repeated behaviors, situations, and linguistic performances within Gorostiza's play. In contrast, in Peveroni's play one observes how and why collective memory is transmitted through ephemeral, embodied practices. Ritualized actions become the basis for repertoires of behavior handed down from generations across time and geographical divides as a way of preserving history and personal experiences. Though more than 50
doi:10.1353/ltr.2005.0015 fatcat:anmke4cdunhivmcpv2jo332fpq