Signifying the Nation(In)Communication, Absence and National (Be)Longing in Marc Evans’s Patagonia (2010)

Authors Organisations
Type Chapter
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationSpaces of Longing and Belonging
Subtitle of host publicationTerritoriality, Ideology and Creative Identity in Literature and Film
EditorsBrigitte le Juez, Bill Richardson
PublisherBrill
Chapter12
Pages210-231
Number of pages21
ISBN (Print) 978-9004402928
Publication statusPublished - 2019
Permanent link
View graph of relations
Citation formats

Abstract

Patagonia (2010) is a critically acclaimed film which interrogates the relationship between myth and national/cultural identities. The film charts the transformational journeys of two women at different stages of their lives: Gwen, who is searching for her future, and Cerys, who is looking for her past. Within the parallel narratives, we are also led to explore the immigrant story and the colonial legacy which provided the impulse for immigration and was also its result. Patagonia thus explores national and cultural identities via the significance of Patagonia, the place, within the national myth of Wales, as well as interrogating Welsh identities, as characters search for a place to belong. This essay considers how issues related to Welsh national identity, longing and belonging are addressed in the film, and how the film articulates the need to (re)create social and cultural selfhood, establishing a sense of identity that challenges cultural hegemonies. In so doing, it draws on post-colonial paradigms of cultural hybridity and Bhabha’s theory of interstitial spaces.