Dom Casmurro by Joaquim Maria Machado de Assis, and Chronicle of A Death Foretold by

Better Essays
Dom Casmurro by Joaquim Maria Machado de Assis, and Chronicle of A Death Foretold by

Gabriel García Márquez

Works Cited Not Included

Religion is supremacy, perfection and spirituality. A typical Latin

American religious community heavily relies on religion to provide a

moral framework to guide and protect its citizens. However, projecting

religion in the light of perfection is superficial. In actuality, it

often contains flaws underneath its idealistic teachings. The

inadequacy in maintaining the idealistic doctrines is deeply rooted in

society. Such notion is reflected and commented upon in the novels Dom

Casmurro by Joaquim Maria Machado de Assis and Chronicle of A Death

Foretold by Gabriel Garci­a Marquez. In both novels, the authors

effectively criticize religion through their satiric portrayal of

religious authorities and other characters' attitudes towards


The two novels reveal the practical result of religion in a critical

light. The ideal doctrine of religion adjusts itself to the imperfect

world in ways that some times do not command respect. The actual

practice of the doctrine allows flexibility, which is often abused. In

Dom Casmurro, Bento and Jose Dias imagine that a journey to see the

Pope will undo Dona Gloria's promise to God. Eventually they settle

the matter much more conveniently by resorting to the local church. As

shown in Escobar's speech, the characters are constantly manipulating

with the power of the religious authorities: "Consult the protonotary

about it and if he hesitates, we'll speak to the bishop" (171). This

implies that the people often seek and take advantages of the plot

holes in religion.

The concept of religion as an obligation becomes obvious through...

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...o to mirror the Church's failure to

uphold high moral standards and use their authority effectively and


Through the subtle and detailed portrayals of the characters in the

novels Chronicle of A Death Foretold and Dom Casmurro shed a

criticizing light on the hypocritical Church present in the community.

Bento's repulsion to be religiously devoted bluntly reveals the

blemishes in the practical result of religion hidden underneath

seemingly deep devotion. The tragedy of Santiago Nasar explores the

other defects of religion, one that is present in the Church itself,

and how failure to uphold moral standards in Church upsets the

community. Of course the authors do not write solely to condemn

religion, they also bring forth the concept that people must adjust

their attitudes toward religion and then irrational, old values set by

the past Church.
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