Gabriel Garcia Marquez (Reaktion Books - Critical Lives)
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“Many years later, as he faced the firing squad, Colonel Aureliano Buendía was to remember that distant afternoon when his father took him to discover ice.” Thus begins Nobel Prize winner Gabriel García Márquez’s One Hundred Years of Solitude, one of the twentieth century’s most lauded works of fiction. In Gabriel García Márquez, literary scholar Stephen M. Hart provides a succinct yet thorough look into García Márquez’s life and the political struggles of Latin America that have influenced his work, from Love in the Time of Cholera to Memories of My Melancholy Whores.
By interviewing García Márquez’s family in Cuba, Hart was able to gain a unique perspective on his use of “creative false memory,” providing new insight into the magical realism that dominates García Márquez’s oeuvre. Using these interviews and his original research, Hart defines five ingredients that are critical to García Márquez’s work: magical realism, a shortened and broken portrayal of time, punchy one-liners, dark and absurd humor, and political allegory. These elements, as described by Hart, illuminate the extraordinary allure of García Márquez’s work and provide fascinating insight into his approach to writing. Hart also explores the divisions between García Márquez’s everyday life and his life as a writer, and the connection in his work between family history and national history.
Gabriel García Márquez presents an original portrait of this well-renowned writer and is a must-read for fans of his work as well as those interested in magical realism, Latin American fiction, and modern literature.
and such marvellous inventions, the people of Macondo did not know where the amazement began’ (One Hundred Years of Solitude, p. 185).25 It is when this modernity – which had first appeared in the novel as an innocent, humorous gag in the form of gypsies’ tricks, false teeth, a train becoming ‘a kitchen dragging a village behind it’ (p. 184) – shows its true colours as the harbinger of us capitalism that One Hundred Years of Solitude reveals itself as a political novel. 83 The first sign of
been García Márquez’s illegitimate uncle, was the prototype for José Arcadio Segundo in One Hundred Years of Solitude, who died during the massacre, and yet also testified to it, though, as we have seen, he may also be interpreted as a ghost. García Márquez’s text is ambivalent on this point: José Arcadio Segundo may, indeed, already have become a ghost by the time he returned to his family home and hid in the back room. This allows us to offer a new interpretation of the ghosts which people
García Márquez’s own family as he himself discovered; thus he calculated that his grandfather had had between twelve and nineteen hijos naturales, mainly as a result of his travelling around Colombia during the War of a Thousand Days, and Colonel Aureliano has seventeen hijos naturales, who return to their father’s home, and are later assassinated in mysterious circumstances. One Hundred Years of Solitude dramatizes 97 the dangers inherent in incest; Arcadio nearly commits incest with his
Jacques Gilard, published the first volume of a four-volume edition of the Colombian writer’s journalism, Obra períodistica: textos costeños (Journalism: Coastal Articles). A screenplay, Viva Sandino (Long Live Sandino, 1982)47 narrates the attack by the Sandinistas at the house of Dr José María Castillo Quant in Managua, their holding of the occupants as hostages, and concludes with the Sandinistas achieving a moral victory and allowing their message to be broadcast on the radio. Though
events of an individual’s life, and there are others – such as Efraín Kristal – who see the novelistic qualities of the autobiography as a strength.30 Indeed, it is not clear where the dividing line between fact and fiction falls in Living to Tell the Tale, that is, it is difficult to ascertain which events might be described as empirically valid and which are fictionalized versions. It is clear that the autobiography is as fictional as the fiction is real, that is to say that – in García