On the power of Money and the King of Spain's son-in- law

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The greatest Spanish satirist lived in the Golden Age: Francisco de Quevedo yVillegas (1580–1645). His satirical poetry has become national commonknowledge for most Spaniards. The power of his satire is such that it has beenable to cross temporal borders and still serves in the 21st century as a model ofinspiration for popular contemporary satire. A telling example is related to therecent scandal around the King of Spain’s son-in-law, who was involved in ashameful corruption case. Through new medial forms like the internet, satiricalnon-canonical poems spread with the Royal son-in-law as a target. Some of thepoems, written with a Golden-Age flair, are also accompanied by visual satiricalimages that also go back to well-known Golden Age paintings, for exampleby El Greco. This particular case shows how far the reach of satire as a socialphenomenon can be. Although the strong and specific referentiality of satireis frequently mentioned as its weak point, it is interesting to see how certain“timeless” examples of satire can function as source of inspiration in anotherperiod. Is there an explanation for this attraction to the Golden Age period?


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