Don Quixote: The Writings of Cervantes Essay

Don Quixote: The Writings of Cervantes Essay

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The writings of Cervantes may have been influenced by the writings of Shakespeare, Petrarch, etc. regarding concepts such as the story-within-a-story and the tyrannical female image, giving them a spot in the classical genre. However, Don Quixote has received multiple criticism for its style of writing and ambiguity, but of course, like many other authors, Cervantes had a clear reason why there were mini-narratives surrounding the main one. Despite critics’ opinions that the stories in Don Quixote are irrelevant, Cervantes included the stories on purpose to develop Don Quixote’s character through themes such as deception/manipulation and delusion/imagination that are seen in the main narrative and side narratives.

Although delusion and deception are synonyms, the significant difference is that delusion is a passive act that acts upon the mind without active participation of the individual, while with deception, the individual controls it. However, deception as a theme in this literary work does not only mean self-deception, but also by supporting characters. In the tale of Inappropriate Curiosity/the Curious Impertinent, telling of a man set on testing his wife’s loyalty, manipulation by other characters is present, similar to Don Quixote’s situation with his friends. Primarily, the tale builds up Don Quixote’s character by creating a parallel or a co-definer. The main character, Anselmo, mirrors certain aspects of Don Quixote in several ways. In terms of deception, Lothario fools Anselmo into believing that Lothario is really courting Camilla, equating to Don Quixote’s friends fooling him into believing that a character from a book was responsible for making the books in his library disappear. Also, with a hint of the tyrannical...


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... no apologies during the argument in the funeral as well. Furthermore, before the deaths of both men, they denounce their self-deception—Grisostomo by accepting that Marcela really did not love him, and Don Quixote by rejecting his being a knight-errant. Overall, the goatherd’s tale emphasizes the idea of imagination and sleight of hand also seen in the main narrative.

Besides the aforementioned tales, another story about Cardenio and Dorotea show the brilliant use of parody and strategy to employ dramatic comedy with the coincidental scene where all the characters in the story bump into one another at the saloon. Ultimately, the tales are not out of place—they were intended by Cervantes to reinforce Don Quixote’s character in its entirety, and also to boast Cervantes’ authorship/writing skill as great as Shakespeare, Spenser, etc.



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