Argentinean essayists Domingo Faustino Sarmiento and Eduardo Mallea both applied antithetical terms in their explorations of Argentinean identity. Sarmiento juxtaposed “la civilización” and “la barbarie,” while Mallea applied “lo visible” and “’lo invisible.” In response to a somewhat superficial comparison of the terms found within current criticism, and in light of their importance within the writings of both essayists, an in-depth exploration of the terms is undertaken here, addressing the differing objectives and contexts of the writers and revealing a significant evolution in Argentinean thought. From Sarmiento to Mallea, progress is being made toward the development of uniquely Argentinean “center.”

Bio Note

L. Nannette Mosley is a doctoral candidate in Romance Languages at The University of Georgia. Her primary research interests lie in French and Spanish literature of the 20th and 21st centuries. Her dissertation, entitled “The Role and Meaning of the Mélusine Myth in Modern Narrative: A Jungian Perspective,” explores the presence of this French medieval myth in four modern works.

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