Intimist novel: what it is, its emergence, characteristics, works and authors


What is the intimist novel?

Intimist novels are those works of this genre that attempt to delve into those aspects of the self that have been forgotten, frustrated or simply omitted. In this way, the authors choose to use a lyrical tone in which they go through human problems related to what is at the bottom of the personality, also reaching the existential issue in search of the meaning of life, questioning identity, among other processes.

What is the intimist novel

It is possible to identify an intimate novel not only by the way it is written, but also by its themes. In this sense, readers who delve into this type of literature leave aside the great characters that echoed in world literature, as well as historical data, descriptions focused on the environments and times, and move on to look at the sensitivity, the interior and the exploration of the human condition.

Emergence of the intimate novel

The birth of this type of texts takes place after the progress experienced by the narrative genre after 1975 and has been maintained until today. During these years, a great amount of novel production has been evidenced, which, on the other hand, allows a strong recovery of the genre after a reduction of this type of works.

One of the factors that detonate the appearance of this type of texts is the tiredness experienced by the authors in experimentation within their creative processes, which generates that most of them want to return to the traditional narration, taking as a reference, especially, the realistic authors of the 19th century.

Development of the intimate novel

Now, it is worthwhile to take a closer look at the creative process. In this case, we are talking about authors who no longer carry out a detailed analysis of the world or its context, although these elements necessarily influence the feelings, thoughts and actions of human beings, but who try to turn the narrator into the protagonist himself and leave aside the great characters that had been prominent until their appearance.

In its content, the novel is oriented towards the depth of human thought and feeling. In this way, we can highlight that one of its great elements of creation has to do with the predominance of subjectivity.

Main characteristics of the intimist novel

After having made a tour on its progress and origin, it is time to review the most important characteristics of the intimist novel and how these are developed in the creation of the works. Among them we have the following:

Telling as an objective

One of the main characteristics of this type of texts has to do with the fact that the authors do not seek or go through the path of experimentation as the end of their work, but are immersed in the pleasure of writing, where telling becomes the goal of their creations.

Traditional resources

In order to strengthen the field of the novel, authors, in many cases, tend to use the traditional resources of this type of texts, so that they include elements of the narrative genre with which they enrich their works.

Tone of the work

Another important feature to be considered about this type of texts is that they are works in which there can be different tonalities or tints, if you will. Thus, we can find in the intimate novel irony, sarcasm, as well as elements for humor, among others. However, this does not leave aside the intimate character of this type of texts, where it can also acquire a nostalgic or melancholic tone.

Absence of ideologies

Another important point that we must evaluate is the absence of ideologies that this type of texts of various kinds have, so that they are no longer used as axes of development or themes within the novels.

Mode of writing

An important aspect that the authors have made sure to implement, has to do with the way in which these types of texts are written, since we often see that they are works that are written with a simple language but not for that reason simple. Leftovers with a great lyrical or poetic content, an element that is the gateway to deepen the sensitivity, associations, among others.

Characters of the works

In this type of texts, heroic, brave and strong characters are left aside. The authors give priority to characters that show the other side of themselves, not what they appear to be, but expose their insecurities, show them as helpless, nostalgic beings.

Works of the intimate novel

Works and authors of the intimate novel

These are some of the most important works of this type of texts: Marafariña, Todas las horas mueren, El desorden de tu nombre, by Juan José Millás, Juegos de la edad tardía by Luis Landero, Malena es un nombre de tango by Almudena Grandes, El lápiz del carpintero by Manuel Rivas, Corazón tan blanco by Javier Macías, La loca de la casa by Rosa Montero, Mortal y rosa by Francisco Umbral, La isla de los jacintos cortados by Torrente Ballester, La lluvia amarilla by Julio Llamazares, Espejo roto by Mercé Rodoreda, among others.

To learn more about other types of literature, as well as to continue learning more about the evolution of this artistic field, remember that in our Literature section, in Types of art, you can find a lot of information that will be very useful.