Book Notes: Horacio Castellanos Moya’s The Dream of Return

Yes, it’s been weeks without me bugging anybody with Castellanos Moya, so I’m back at it. Castellanos Moya belongs to the so-called Disillusioned Generation of Central American writers. Before this group started publishing, Central American literature mostly consisted of the very earnest and deathly boring “testimonial” writing about the Cold War-inspired dictatorships and civil wars in the region.

Starting somewhere in the late 1990s, Central American writers finally got tired of all this inane earnestness and starting writing real literature. And that’s why they are called the disillusioned generation. They have been accused of being ideologically neutral but that’s only because the accusers still see the world in the left vs right terms of the Cold War era.

Castellanos Moya writes about the costs of fluidity, which is why I’m obsessed with him. That’s hardly apolitical but his politics aren’t about the antiquated struggles between Cold War forces.

I won’t rest until I read all this guy has ever written. I tell you, folks, I haven’t been this excited about a writer since Rafael Chirbes.