The Concept Of Fantasy And Reality In Marquez's On

1431 words - 6 pages

For the most part, people accept the world in which they are presented. Whatever environment a person is raised in is the environment that is accepted as normality for its inhabitants. If at any time something else is introduced to that "normal environment" that is not consistent with the inhabitant's ideas of normality, then that item is usually not accepted readily. Such is the case for the people of the fictional city of Macondo in Gabriel Jose Garcia Marquez's One Hundred Years of Solitude whose magical world is presented with a world of modernity and technology to which they must adapt and ultimately fall prey to. This novel, although ...view middle of the document...

(Biography of) This is also a novel that grants myth in both a Biblical and Latin American sense and gives the same level of credibility to each as fact. It is sensitive to the magic that superstition and religion infuse into the world, and there is also a sense "…that the Western emphasis on logic ignores a very real and very potent strain of magic that in fact does run through our daily lives."(Modern World) One Hundred Years of Solitude, then, is a realistic novel in the sense that it asserts a unity between the surreal and the real: it asserts that magic is as real and as relevant as what we normally take to be reality. An example of this can be seen in the novel shortly after the arrival of the railroad that, when dozens of new inventions such as the phonograph, telephone, and the electric light bulb were introduced into Macondo, "[i]t was as if God had decided to put to the test every capacity for surprise and was keeping the inhabitants of Macondo in a permanent alternation between excitement and disappointment, doubt and revelation, to such an extreme that no one knew for certain where the limits of reality lay." The citizens, who had previously accepted flying carpets and unbelievable rains of yellow flowers as common the way of things, doubted the reality of technological inventions that we see as common place. Now, the citizens of Macondo who at one time believed in a world that we would call one of magic and myth, must now accept science in addition to magic.Although the realism and the magic that One Hundred Years of Solitude includes seem at first to be opposites, the reader quickly is shown how well the two ideas can blend together to create an almost confusing, yet always fascinating world. Both are necessary in this novel in order to convey Marquez's view of the world and the people contained within it. This novel reflects reality not from the perspective of one observer experiencing it, but as different characters with different backgrounds experience it.This multiple perspective approach is especially fitting to the unique reality of a Latin America caught between modernity and pre-industrialism as well as torn by civil war and ravaged by imperialism, where the experiences of people vary much more vastly than they might in a more homogenous society. This environment, complete with multiple perspectives, fosters multiple conceptions of reality, some of which may seem incredible to us, but commonplace both to the novelist and to readers familiar with magical realism. Magical realism, then, is first and foremost a type of realism, conveying a reality that has become fantastic. It is sensitive to the magic that superstition and religion infuse into the world. In effect, Marquez makes this world of fantasy seem real often by working in some form of truth or reality that is probably from his own personal experience. For instance, in places like Marquez's hometown, which...

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