In her article, "Cultural Scenarios of the Fantastic," Asunción López-Varela Azcárate explores the relationship between technological development, the materiality of objects, the concept of ontological presence, and the emergence of abstract and fantastic models. López-Varela Azcárate argues that since the early twentieth century there has been a return to the fantastic in literature and that this is related to neo-baroque attitudes whose foundations are a systemic way of knowing that unveils a world understandable from an epistemology of complexity and ambiguity. In postmodern neo-baroque aesthetics, with its focus on technological re-mediating, that is, transferring information across different media, originality is no more than the capacity to deconstruct pre-established formulas. This represents a phenomenon where the cultural and the technological meet, since repetition arises from excess of information thus showing the material and local character of the cultural. López-Varela Azcárate shows how the emergence of hybrid and fantastic perspectives embedded in negative values implies a changing of values, that is, referential parameters about ourselves, the others, nature, etc. The conflict between a vision of the world as a closed system and the vision of the world as group of local open systems with permeable borders is a conflict which anticipates ideological, political, economical, and axiological systems and thus it signifies a cultural conflict.
López-Varela Azcaráte, Asunción.
"Cultural Scenarios of the Fantastic."
CLCWeb: Comparative Literature and Culture
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