Fuerzas especiales

Periférica, 2015 | Special Forces

(Special Forces) In Fuerzas especiales, Eltit’s tenth novel, the protagonist is a young woman from the slums who prostitutes herself for ttle money. Her father is out of work and her mother is dying. A world under siege and on state of alert; a small universe of housing blocks surrounded by violence, police harassment and fear. A fear that is imprinted on very page of this novel and conditions every act, every word of its protagonist.
the title is a reference to the Chilean police’s Specials Forces, who evict students from schools on strike as well as raid Mapuche communities. But it also hints at the orces needed to resist in a slum and its tiny living spaces. There, the prostitute delves into the cyber world as a way of evading herself, a bleak oppressive space for sex trade.
“I go to the cyber café as a woman in search of her food on the screens. Everyone eats each other. They eat me, too, they pull my underwear down in front of the screens. Or do I do it myself, pulling them down mesmerised by the magnetic glow of computers?”
Once again Eltit deals with violence and the marks it leaves on the body, common themes in her work, and her language is like a sharp knife that describes police and political brutality amidst family longings and disease. The author herself has said: “While some progress has been made in Chile we have a widespread social plague that is inequality, the largest in history. This is where its brand turns bolder, and while poverty levels may have decreased, inequality has grown. All of Chile’s economic wealth to only benefit 1% of the population? In Chile there is no limit to wealth, it is a laboratory of neoliberalism; no other country has such high-quality health care and no free public university. Are these the underpinnings of Pinochet’s Constitution