Scorpions in Havana: Lino Novás Calvo’s cuban detective fiction


This article focuses on the eight detective stories published by Lino Novás Calvo in the magazine Bohemia between 1948 and 1952. These texts are presented as precedents of the contemporary Cuban detective fiction (neo-policial), characterized by the deep social nature of its narrations. The contrast displayed in various writings by this author -letters, articles, and the aforementioned detective stories-, reveals the importance bestowed upon both the atmosphere and the characters in those fictions, where the Cuban and the universal essences coexist. Tainted places and scorpion-like creatures make possible for Novás Calvo to dive into the forsaken side of a society in Havana characterized, in his vision, by falsehood, violence, and corruption. Finally, the article highlights how the immediacy of events and contexts, the reflection of the socio-political scene -the bonchismo, particularly- and the register of the different linguistic modalities, are all used by the author as resources to depict Havana unambiguously.

Lino Novás Calvo; 8 narraciones policiales; Cuban Short Stories; Contemporary Cuban Detective Fiction (neo-policial); Latin American Detective Narrative; Bohemia

Programa de Pos-Graduação em Letras Neolatinas, Faculdade de Letras -UFRJ Av. Horácio Macedo, 2151, Cidade Universitária, CEP 21941-97 - Rio de Janeiro RJ Brasil , - Rio de Janeiro - RJ - Brazil