is a 1979 novel by acclaimed Argentine
novelist Manuel Puig
. It is perhaps Puig's work most influenced by pop culture
. This can be seen in the montage
imitating narrative technique, soap opera
and science fiction
elements. Also like other Puig works, it deals with psychological
A film was released in 1981.
The narrative alternates between separate narratives. One is reality, an Argentine
woman confined to a Mexican sanitarium
in the 1970s. The others are a representation of her unconscious
. In this second narrative, the woman is in Central Europe
in the years leading up to World War II
. She is here involved in various intrigues, and carries on an extramarital romance. The third narrative, another representation of the protagonist's unconscious, is a science fiction tale involving a cyborg woman named W218 in a post-apocalyptic Polar Age, who serves the government by performing sexual therapy on aging men, and is therefore in a sense a government sponsored prostitute.