chapter  Chapter Nine
35 Pages

On the Edge

WithLinda E. Chown

In Memoirs and The Back Room, the writers successfully move in the direction of assuming their own moral authority, in following the movement of dark sense, as opposed to imposing an intellectualized version of how things ought to be. Each writer adjusts and mixes established genre conventions to suit her exploration of appropriate and inappropriate moral behavior for woman. Martin Gaite exploits fantasy in its various versions but principally via the novela rosa, itself amalgam of the sentimental and gothic novel. In the novel, the narrator must simultaneously adjust the authority she inherits as a guardian to the establishment of natural anarchy. In The Back Room, the issue of being good or bad becomes even more explicitly the center than in Memoirs. In Memoirs there is a series of interlocking literary persona.