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Abstract

In her article "New Modernity, Transnational Women, and Spanish Cinema" Maria Van Liew discusses aspects of migration to Spain in the context of histories of colonialism, racism, and sexism as represented in Spanish filmic narration. The flow of human traffic defies two aspects of European modernity: Non-linear time is reflected in the cycle of arrival/return/return as the nation relies on liminal subjects to determine its status as a progressive "First World" nation and in the effort to align representations of these cultural encounters accordingly, illusions of autochthonous national identity formations become dependent on practices of inclusion and, at times, cooptation of "the other" within. While "transnational subjects" are a fixture in most European films about immigration, the aesthetic result often remains intimately linked to the social and political structures of the host region/city/town, a landscape which, in turn, exhibits traces of its Eurocentric national "past." Van Liew explores the role of "First World" loneliness in receiving the "Third World" in Spanish immigration films such as Iciar Bollaín's Flores de otro mundo (1999) and Fernando León de Aranoa's Princesas (2005). By emphasizing the particularities of arrival as experienced and determined by the various characters' levels of economic autonomy in conjunction with the pigment of their skin, Liew proposes a transnational reading of the inequalities, differences, and solidarities that arise from "new" arrivals indebted to globalization.

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