The return to the preoccupations and discourses of Romanticism that was implicit in the cyberfiction texts from Brazil is an explicit, dominant dimension of the texts produced in Argentina. This can partly be explained by the differences between the status of science fiction in Brazil and Argentina. The Brazilian cyberpunk texts revisit tropes and narrative conventions of popular genres ranging from the literatura de sensação of the end of the nineteenth century to the pornochanchada of the 1970s and 1980s, through a literary equivalent of the “garbage aesthetic.” The two Argentine texts that I discuss in the following two chapters, meanwhile, insert themselves firmly into the tradition of postmodern literary science fiction, the model of which was provided by Piglia through Borges and Adolfo Bioy Casares. By the time that Eduardo Blaustein and Marcelo Cohen sat down to write their novels, the use of science fiction narratives to make political points was a tried and tested strategy, employed through different media from the comic book, in El Eternauta (1957–1959) by Héctor Germán Oesterheld with artwork by Francisco Solano López, to film, in Hugo Santiago’s Invasión (1969) and Eliseo Subiela’s Hombre mirando al sudeste (1986). This is not to say that a tradition of politicized science fiction writing was absent in Brazil (as evidenced by Ignácio de Loyola Brandão’s 1981 novel Não verás país nenhum) but that it was much more firmly rooted in Argentina.
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