Presentation on theme: "“The Handsomest Drowned Man in the World”"— Presentation transcript:
1“The Handsomest Drowned Man in the World” Gabriel Garcia Marquez
2Objectives For what literary style is Gabriel Garcia Marquez famous? What does the title character in the story represent?How does Esteban transform the village?
3Gabriel Garcia Marquez Considered one of Columbia’s foremost writersBegan his writing career as a journalist and published his first two novels in 1961He was friends with Fidel Castro and founded the Colombian branch of Castro’s new agencyHe was known for writing works that angered his governmentHe won the Nobel Prize for Literature in 1982
4Magic RealismrealismA literary movement in which strange things exist in an otherwise normal world- and no one treats them as strange.A literary style in which unusual or magical happenings are related to the reader as though they were ordinary.It is NOT science fiction or fantasyPat Murphy states, “In science fiction, if everyone is walking around with a talking monkey on his head, you need an explanation for it. In magic realism, everyone acts as if the monkeys have always been there.”
5PlotChildren find a dead body of a drowned man washed up on the beach of their isolated, tiny seaside community.The corpse begins to change the world of the villagers.They name the corpse Esteban after the first Christian martyr.The villagers prepare an elaborate funeral for him and then put him back in the water.Before they put him back, they choose the best villagers to serve as family- his mother, father, and other relativesThe village learns important lessons from Esteban
6IronyMarquez narrates the story in a matter-of-fact way- it encourages us to take it seriouslyThe strange is treated as normal, but there is also a strong undertone of irony- a sense that the story’s events are a bit absurdEven though he is an ordinary dead man, the villagers treat him as extraordinary.
7ThemesThe irony of the unidentified corpse becoming something like a god draws our attention to the story’s main themes-Mankind’s deep desire to believe in something greater, and our impressive capacity for faith.Humans are so eager to believe in and to make sense of things that they can find meaning in the nameless corpse.
8Symbolism Esteban- a symbol of the god or gods of any religion He has the power to transform the lives of the people in the villageHe unites the villageHe gives them meaning and a sense of purpose
9AllusionThe religious allusion that a drowned man is like a god or saintSir Walter Raleigh- would have been exotic to the villagersHomer’s Odyssey- a rumored sailor “has himself tied to the mainmast, remembering ancient fables about sirens”Heightens the irony- he is merely an unknown dead person, yet the villagers worship him
10SettingNot a definite time- although hints at the 16th or 17th century, possibly on the coast of ChileIt is also possible, especially given the story’s magic realism, that the setting is actually more modern- a backwater village lost in time and in no particular place
11ParableThis story is meant to be a parable- a short instructive story that illustrates a lessonParables often teach simple moralsThis story expresses more complicated truths about our world
12Truth is Subjective Truth is in the mind of the believer Esteban is dead, so the people are free to decide who he wasThey decide he was saintlySince he is unknown, the villagers get to decide who he was- it unites them and gives the purposeAt the end, Esteban’s story becomes and accepted truth
13Meaning Can Transform the World People need meaning in their lives as much as plants need waterThe villagers live on the edge of a desert, which is a symbol for the lack of meaning in their livesThey live a life of simple survival, without ambitionDuring Esteban’s funeral, they realize how empty their lives have beenThe people beautify their village so much so that it becomes famous
14ConclusionGabriel García Marquez is a Nobel Prize-winning Colombian novel and short story writer who is considered a leading writer of magical realism.“The Handsomest Drowned Man in the World” is a parable about humankind’s need for meaning and belief, and the ability of ideas to transform the world.One of the story’s major themes is that truth is subjective. It does not matter if Esteban really was a sincere and noble man as the people believe—or even if he is actually beautiful—because their faith in him, their truth, is what matters.
15Esteban is a symbol of the god or gods of any religion, and also of any compelling belief that has the power to transform society.The transformation in the story is caused by a coincidence—the body washing up on the shore—a reminder that the world changes in unpredictable ways.