Gabriel Garcia Marquez's Chronicle Of A Death Foretold

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Gabriel Garcia Marquez’s Chronicle of a Death Foretold seeks to critique the notion of honour killings through the effects of Marquez’s use of numerous structural elements which contribute to the overall nonlinear structure. The most significant of these is the journalistic framework that portrays this sense of fragmentation and the use of a first person yet omniscient narrator who subtly suggests that the victim was innocent. This critique is furthered by the use of repetition which evokes a foreshadowing tone that is symbolic society’s inability and unwillingness to prevent the murder. Furthermore, of the various sentences structures exhibited, passive voice grants the ability to characters in novel of avoiding responsibility in regards to the murder. Hence, through these effects of Marquez’s structural choices, he criticises the whole notion of honour killings.
In the novel there is no chronological structure but instead it adopts a non-linear journalistic framework. By doing so, a sense of incongruity is portrayed which can be extrapolated to represent the disorder of society in regards to the honour killing. This notion is evident in the novel as it consists of fragments of evidence that are pieced together at different stages. The narrator sifts through factual evidence, eyewitness statements and other “scattered shards” (Marquez 2007) in an attempt to reconstruct “the broken mirror of memory” (Marquez 2007). These quotes are actually representative of the novel itself: the plot is ‘broken’; the ‘mirror of memory’ is symbolic of the mirroring repetitions of dreams and motifs; and the evidence the narrator collects is fragmented, much like the plot, consisting of only ‘scattered shards’. Thus, the novel’s structure is represe...

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...ud conjures up a sense of the supernatural. Furthermore, in relation to the diction; the use of the word ‘syrup’ arouses a sense of sweetness which contrasts the actual harshness of the sight. Therefore, despite this being a gruesome sight in reality, it is masked by the surrealistic ambience which represents the confused and delusional state of the townspeople that results in their false impression that the murder was not going to take place.
Throughout Gabriel Garcia Marquez’s Chronicle of a Death Foretold, its structure emerges as a significant aspect of the novel; whether it be at a macroscopic level in terms of the structure of events and repetition of motifs or at a microscopic level in terms of sentence structure. Nonetheless, these structural choices and elements all enhance Marquez’s overarching critique of Santiago’s murder and hence, the honour system.
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