oa African Yearbook of Rhetoric - Doxa y vigilancia a las artes del espectáculo en la provincia de Buenos Aires

Volume 8 Number 1
  • ISSN : 2220-2188
  • E-ISSN: 2305-7785



From its beginnings in or around 1958 until the end of the last Argentine military dictatorship in 1983, the Department of Intelligence of the Police of the Province of Buenos Aires (DIPBA) maintained “independent” theatre ensembles and film clubs under permanent surveillance. The discourse of the “secret and confidential” intelligence reports it produced was nonetheless part of a social discourse that determined what could be said about films and theatre plays: what the spectator-spy said about the shows he saw was defined by doxa. The study of the doxa reveals points of agreement, shared premises and chains of arguments which aim not only to persuade but also to make sure that texts are comprehensible. In this article, we focus on the shared opinions and beliefs on theatre and film in the intelligence reports of the DIPBA. Together these helped define which theatre and film groups should be watched and controlled in case they were “infiltrated” by “dangerous” ideas. We review topics and chains of argument which reappear in argumentations and counter-argumentations in the reports forming a “doxic network” linking the consensus view about the “enemy” to watch (fundamentally, communism) with the opinions of what could be called the “ordinary theatre and cinema-goer”.

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