, Volume 92, Issue 3, pp 367–384

Subversion or Oxymoron?: Fantastic Literature and the Metaphysics of the Object


DOI: 10.1007/s11061-007-9091-7

Cite this article as:
Martínez, J.M. Neophilologus (2008) 92: 367. doi:10.1007/s11061-007-9091-7


Many of the classical readings of fantastic literature, such as Todorov’s, Jackson’s or Bellemin-Noël’s emphasize the subversive or irrational component of it. Although studies on its mimetic component exist as well, they have not pursued to the end the logical conclusions of the interaction between both fields. Through a typology of objects as they appear in fantastic fiction, and the study of their ontology, this article attempts to show how realistic view is not only a foundational base of fantastic discourse but it also proves what this discourse is claimed to question, i.e. the vindication of metaphysical consistency of reality. Using examples from Spanish and other linguistic traditions, the conclusion is reached that fantastic literature is oxymoronic by essence, and only subversive or dissident a posteriori, i.e. after obeying the conscious intentions of the writer.


Fantastic LiteratureMetaphysicsObjectsMimesisLiterary RealismSubversion

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2008

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Modern LanguagesThe University of Texas-Pan AmericanEdinburgUSA