One Hundred Years of Solitude By Gabriel Garcia Marquez
The Initial Awe Picturesque writing style Language, syntax Long musical sentences Appeal to senses Magical Realism Tone – tragically beautiful, peaceful Flow – stream of conscious writing Suspending Disbelief Cyclic time – Timeless Detachment of author- no judgment/bias Themes – Love, Solitude, War, Family
When it was opened by the giant, the chest gave off a glacial exhalation. Inside there was only an enormous transparent block with infinite internal needles in which the light of the sunset was broken up into colored stars… “It’s the largest diamond in the world.” “No,” the gypsy countered. “It’s ice.” The tone that I eventually used in One Hundred Years of Solitude was based on the way my grandmother used to tell stories. She told things that sounded supernatural and fantastic, but she told them with complete naturalness…What was most important was the expression she had on her face. She did not change her expression at all when telling her stories…I tried to tell the story without believing in it. I discovered that what I had to do was believe in them myself and write them with the same expression with which my grandmother told them: with a brick face.
More Awe – The Characters Too many characters- inhibits identifying with them – limits beauty of piece when it is hard to find beauty in the characters. Protagonist – the town Macondo Beauty in the character’s actions Jose Arcadio saves his brother Ursula always keeps things together, strength of the town. Characters use imagination to imprison themselves. Beautiful?
The Provoked Wonder What makes this piece universally beautiful? What is the moral message? What am I suppose to take from this book or is there anything I am suppose to take from this book? Can I find it beautiful without taking any personal message from it? What really is magical realism and where do we draw the line between magical realism and fantasy? Is the old testament magical realism?
The Search For Answers Anabella’s interpretation of the message: “Nothing Matters” Who Cares that any of it took place? The town is cut-off/ invisible to the rest of the world, but means everything to the inhabitants. Application to personal life: personal issues mean nothing to the rest of the world There’s beauty in merely being lost in the language, flow, the experience. The mere enjoyment of the story – telling it and being audience to it
Mr. Garcia Marquez has done nothing less than to create in the reader a sense of all that is profound, meaningful, and meaningless in life. -William Kennedy, New York Times Book Review
Differences that are Beautiful 1 st person narrative vs. 3 rd person omniscient – more of a one-on-one story / More connection with the protagonist The presence of the author’s voice Biography vs. Fiction – the story actually took place / her personal struggle How the different characters dealt with adversity – rise above it or succumb to it Motivational message vs. Tragic Acceptance message
Similarities that are Beautiful Lyrical, poetic language Stream of conscious writing Actions of the characters Maya’s growth, strength, perseverance, and wisdom
A Colorful Quote from I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings “Momma bought two bolts of cloth each year for winter and summer clothes. She made my school dresses, underslips, bloomers, handkerchiefs, Bailey’s shirts, shorts, her aprons, house dresses and waists from the rolls shipped to Stamps by Sears and Roebuck. Uncle Willie was the only person in the family who wore ready- to-wear clothes all the time. Each day, he wore fresh white shirts and flowered suspenders, and his special shoes cost twenty dollars. I thought Uncle Willie sinfully vain, especially when I had to iron seven stiff starched shirts and not leave a cat’s face anywhere.”-pg. 50
“To describe my mother would be to write about a hurricane in its perfect power. Or the climbing, falling colors of a rainbow….It is remarkable how much truth there is in the two expressions ‘struck dumb’ and ‘love at first sight.’ My mother’s beauty literally assailed me. Her red lips (Momma said it was a sin to wear lipstick) split to show even white teeth and her fresh-butter color looked see-through clean. Her smile widened her mouth beyond her cheeks beyond her ears and seemingly through the walls to the street outside. I was struck dumb. I knew immediately why she had sent me away. She was too beautiful to have children. I had never seen a woman as pretty as she who was called “Mother.” Bailey on his part fell instantly and forever in love. I saw his eyes shining like hers; he had forgotten the loneliness and the nights when we had cried together because we were ‘unwanted children.’ He had never left her warm side or shared the icy wind of solitude with me. She was his Mother Dear and I resigned myself to his condition. They were more alike than she and I, or even he and I. They both had physical beauty and personality, so I figured it figured.”-pg. 60
“The amount and variety of foods would have found approval on the menu of a Roman epicure. Pans of fried chicken, covered with dishtowels, sat under benches next to a mountain of potato salad crammed with hard-boiled eggs. Whole rust-red sticks of bologna were clothed in cheese-cloth. Homemade pickles and chow-chow, and baked country hams, aromatic with cloves and pineapples, vied for prominence. Our steady customers had ordered cold watermelons, so Bailey and I chugged the striped-green fruit into the Coca-Cola box and filled all the tubs with ice as well as the big black wash pot that Momma used to boil her laundry. Now they too lay sweating in the happy afternoon air. The summer picnic gave ladies a chance to show off their baking hands. On the barbecue pit, chickens and spareribs sputtered in their own fat and a sauce whose recipe was guarded in the family like a scandalous affair. However, in the ecumenical light of the summer picnic every true baking artist could reveal her prize to the delight and criticism of the town. Orange sponge cakes and dark brown mounds dripping Hershey’s chocolate stood layer to layer with ice-white coconuts and light brown caramels. Pound cakes sagged with their buttery weight and small children could no more resist licking the icings that their mothers could avoid slapping the sticky fingers.”-pg. 138
And Still I Rise By Maya Angelou You may write me down in history With your bitter, twisted lies, You may trod me in the very dirt But still, like dust, I'll rise. Does my sassiness upset you? Why are you beset with gloom? 'Cause I walk like I've got oil wells Pumping in my living room. Just like moons and like suns, With the certainty of tides, Just like hopes springing high, Still I'll rise. Did you want to see me broken? Bowed head and lowered eyes? Shoulders falling down like teardrops. Weakened by my soulful cries. Does my haughtiness offend you? Don't you take it awful hard 'Cause I laugh like I've got gold mines Diggin' in my own back yard. You may shoot me with your words, You may cut me with your eyes, You may kill me with your hatefulness, But still, like air, I'll rise. Does my sexiness upset you? Does it come as a surprise That I dance like I've got diamonds At the meeting of my thighs? Out of the huts of history's shame I rise Up from a past that's rooted in pain I rise I'm a black ocean, leaping and wide, Welling and swelling I bear in the tide. Leaving behind nights of terror and fear I rise Into a daybreak that's wondrously clear I rise Bringing the gifts that my ancestors gave, I am the dream and the hope of the slave. I rise I rise I rise.
The Final Evaluation Expectations vs. Deliverance. Enter the piece open-mindedly / untainted by previous knowledge. Beauty surfaces when the purpose of the piece is discovered Yet, beauty can be initially there as well – just experiencing the story