Assigning Blame in Chronicle of a Death Foretold by Gabriel Garcia Marquez

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Assigning Blame in Chronicle of a Death Foretold
Marriages are still considered business contracts in the Latin American culture. A contract where both bride and groom’s family either earn profits or gain respect in society. In the eyes of society and family, a woman is valuable as long as she is a virgin. Latin American daughters are raised to good housewives whose main duties include taking care of the family and the children, and women who go against these traditions or rules pay a heavy price. In Gabriel García Márquez’s novella, Chronicle of a Death Foretold, the character development of Angela Vicario demonstrates that she is guilty for Santiago Nasar’s death; however, the different aspects of the hispanic culture also share the blame.
Márquez develops Angela Vicario’s character as a deceptive and gullible young girl which highlights her being guilty for Santiago Nasar’s death. Angela’s husband Bayardo San Roman finds out on the night of their wedding that Angela is not a virgin, and returns her to her family. Angela only considers telling her mother that she is no longer a virgin, but ultimately decides against it. Before her wedding, she panics, and worriedly asks for help to the women who make cloth flowers with her. The women teach her a few tricks so she can fake being a virgin on her wedding night. Failing to fake being a virgin, Angela dishonors her family and her marriage breaks. Later Angela states to the author, “‘I obeyed them blindly,’ she told me, ‘because they made me believe that they were experts in men’s tricks” (Marquez 42). Marquez’s use of strong words like “obeyed,” and “blindly” helps the reader understand the character of Angela clearly. She is shown to be believing and doing what others tell her at a...

... middle of paper ... losing her virginity is sinful and that is what she has been taught in her society. On the other hand, men are allowed to go to brothels and have sex every night before and after they get married.
Most of the town is guilty for Santiago Nasar’s death, even Santiago himself for being clueless of his surroundings; however, it is Angela Vicario who is the most guilty of the murder of Santiago Nasar because of her foolish mistakes. In Gabriel Garcia Marquez’s novella, Chronicle of a Death Foretold, Angela vicario and the different aspects of the hispanic culture are guilty for Santiago Nasar’s death; the author assigns blame on Angela through word choice and highlights that the culture and traditions of the town are also guilty. It is Angela who fails to fulfil her duty towards her family, but the double standards of society causes Santiago Nasar to pay the price.

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