De Weese, Pamela
Dr. Pamela De Weese teaches at Sweet Briar College in Modern Languages and Literatures.2013 0-7734-4521-8
Luis Goytisolo’s prize winning novel, Statue with Doves, first published in 1992, constitutes a reflection on the challenges of representing reality, especially given the sometimes arbitrary and random nature of what any given individual can come to know about himself and the world in his or her lifetime. And yet, what can be known, when considered as a cumulative, collective enterprise, with its varied context over time, may yield a more transcendent view for the individual, as it confirms our personal experiences, or causes us to challenge our questionable assumptions.
The novel juxtaposes the perspectives of two real authors, separated by space and time, and yet connected by their quest to find a point of departure from which to apprehend what they can recognize to be true, and to represent it by whatever means available to them through their arsenal of observations, research, words, and thought. Within the frame of this novel, both consider the roles of genre, the narrator, and the reader as they reconsider the limits and possibilities of representation against the norms of their respective times.