The History, Theory, and Evolution of Magical Realism Essay

The History, Theory, and Evolution of Magical Realism Essay

Length: 1365 words (3.9 double-spaced pages)

Rating: Strong Essays

Open Document

Essay Preview

The History, Theory, and Evolution of Magical Realism

 
     What comes to mind when one hears the word "magical"? He or she probably thinks of charms, spells, wizards, and disappearing doves. The term "Realism" may represent the everyday world-that with which we are already familiar. Could these two words ever be coupled together to represent one idea? Magical Realism represents the marriage of these two words. A name originally given to a new art form in the early twentieth century, Magical Realism evolved into a literary genre and now represents much more-an attitude, the window through which to view the world, a philosophy of life. By examining the history, theory, and evolution of Magical Realism, this term, seemingly an oxymoron, will make sense.

The term Magical Realism is thought by most critics to have originated in the early twentieth century as a new art form. Franz Roh, to whom we attribute having coined the term, describes this "new" art form in his 1925 article "Magical Realism: Post Expressionism." Roh defines Magical Realism through a chronological examination of artistic styles preceding this "new art." The two periods on which he focuses primarily are Impressionism and Expressionism. Impressionism, which preceded Expressionism, focused on the artists' desire to portray something that existed in reality. An artist may examine the texture, light, or the shapes of an object. The portrayal was simply a caricature of reality, with no significant meaning or stimulation other than the obvious, realistic qualities with which viewers were already familiar. Expressionism, in contrast, sought to portray something with a very deep meaning, refusing to portray reality because it was too mundane and familiar. Intelle...


... middle of paper ...


...

Works Cited

Chanady, Amaryll. "The Territorialization of the Imaginary in Latin America: Self-Affirmation and Resistance to Metropolitan Paradigms." Magical Realism: Theory, History,

Community. Ed. Lois Parkinson Zamora and Wendy B. Faris. Durham, N.C.: Duke UP, 1995: 125-144.

Flores, Angel. "Magical Realism in Spanish American Fiction." Magical Realism: Theory, History, Community. Ed. Lois Parkinson Zamora and Wendy B. Faris.

Durham, N.C.: Duke UP, 1995: 109-117.

Leal, Luis. "Magical Realism in Spanish American Literature." Magical Realism: Theory, History, Community. Ed. Lois Parkinson Zamora and Wendy B. Faris.

Durham, N.C.: Duke UP, 1995: 119-124.

Roh, Franz. "Magic Realism: Post-Expressionism." Magical Realism: Theory, History, Community. Ed. Lois Parkinson Zamora and Wendy B. Faris.

Durham, N.C.: Duke UP,1995: 15-31.

 

Need Writing Help?

Get feedback on grammar, clarity, concision and logic instantly.

Check your paper »

The History and Theory of Magical Realism Essay

- The History and Theory of Magical Realism Magical Realism is one of today's most popular subjects in literature to discuss regarding its history and theory of Magical Realism. It began in the Latin culture and now is known word wide for its attributes. Magical Realism is even rivaling some of the great masterpieces of modern and past literature. Someday Magical Realism will be recognized and respected just as the classics are today. Magical Realism supposedly began in 1935 with its golden age occurring between 1940 and 1950.The Magical Realism of Spanish and Latin America can be somewhat attributed to the social, political, and European influence....   [tags: Literature Magical Realism Essays]

Strong Essays
1041 words (3 pages)

Magical Realism: Theory and History Essay

- Magical Realism: Theory and History While reading Franz Roh, Angel Flores, Amaryll Chanady, and Luis Leal, I have learned many things about magical realism. I also learned that there are many different definitions for magical realism. I have learned that magical realism is not considered a fairy tale. Amaryll Chanady feels that magical realism is focused more toward reality. However, Luis Leal feels that magical realism is used to express emotions. While reading these essays and finding some research on magical realism, I found that many people have many different views on what magical realism is....   [tags: Magical Realism Literature Papers]

Free Essays
1746 words (5 pages)

Essay on Magical Realism as a World View

- Magical Realism as a World View Magical Realism is the way in which a person views the world through a type of art. Magical realism deals with emotions, and it also discovers what is mysterious and meaningful in life. According to Franz Roh, in painting, is the way a person views the world through art (18, 20). Magical Realism has many characteristics that include many other ideas. Magical Realism can be observed in other subject areas, too, such as the logotherapy of Victor Frankl. Simpkins mentioned that "real life" is the "Real magic" (152)....   [tags: Magical Realism Literature]

Free Essays
461 words (1.3 pages)

Connecting Magical Realism and Psychology Essay

- Connecting Magical Realism and Psychology At first, German art critic Franz Roh used the term "Magical Realism" to describe a style of painting (Roh 15). Eventually, Arturo Uslar Pietri adapted the term in order to describe a type of literature (Leal 120). While the exact definition of Magical Realism is open to interpretation, it is certain that Magical Realism gives a deeper meaning to ordinary life by unearthing mysteries that hide behind the world (Roh 16-17). In order to uncover these mysteries, Magical Realism combines fantasy with reality (Flores 110-111)....   [tags: Magical Realism Psychology]

Free Essays
774 words (2.2 pages)

Magical Realism and Quantum Physics Essay

- Magical Realism and Quantum Physics The term Magical Realism is said to have started with the German art critic Franz Roh, who used the trem to describe the return of art to Realism from Expressionism. The term Magical Realism has also been used to categorize some the novels and short stories of authors such as Gabriel Garcia Marquez, Gunter Grass, and John Fowls. These writers use techniques that combine the real and unreal in ways that make them believable and acceptable by both the reader and characters in the stories....   [tags: Magical Realism Literature]

Free Essays
437 words (1.2 pages)

Magical Realism and Psychology Essay example

- Magical Realism and Psychology "Magical realism was first used by the art critic Franz Roh to designate the pictorial output of the Postexpressionist period, beginning around 1925" (Leal 120). Later, this term was applied to forms of literature. This type of literature contains characteristics such as real and unreal elements, no hesitation, and hidden meanings. Given these and other characteristics, it is easy to see that magical realism can be applied to things outside of literature, such as psychology....   [tags: Magical Realism Literature Literary]

Strong Essays
756 words (2.2 pages)

Magical Realism as Applied to the Field of Psychology Essay

- Magical Realism as Applied to the Field of Psychology Throughout time, one finds many different categories of literature. Magical Realism, a relatively new category, seems to be one of, if not the most, controversial category of the last century. Magical Realism combines a magical, often grotesque, element with a reality based background and allows the reader to view life in a more profound way. The field of psychology, specifically the case of the Wild Child known as Genie, parallels very closely with the ideals of Magical Realism....   [tags: Magical Realism Literature]

Strong Essays
665 words (1.9 pages)

Essay on Magical Realism

- Magical Realism The idea of a genre of art that is called magical realism is less a trend than a tradition, an evolving genre that has its waxings and wanings, where each evolving form expresses an idea that may overlap another, yet at the same time branches off and creates something very different. What began in the visual arts has become a contemporary literary genre due to divergences. Contemporary Latin American writers of this mode include Alejo Carpentier, Jorge Luis Borges, Isabel Allende, Gabriel Garcia Marquez, Octavio Paz, Pablo Neruda, and Majorie Agosin....   [tags: Magical Realism Essays]

Strong Essays
1245 words (3.6 pages)

Magical Realism Essay examples

- To many critics of the genre, Magical Realism is nothing but updated children's tales being passed off as substantial literature, but if we look deeper, the essence of this movement is bared to the viewer. By looking at the history and origins of Magical Realism, as well as the term itself, we can begin to understand the importance of this writing style in today's society. The roots behind Magical Realism are found in many cultures, but the literature is mainly attributed to South American writers, such as Gabriel Garcia Marquez....   [tags: Magical Realism Essays]

Free Essays
583 words (1.7 pages)

Magical Realism: History and Theory Essay

- Magical Realism: History and Theory Magical Realism to me is the world's view of literature and art combined. It has a vast amount of characteristics that most, if not all, Magical realist fiction shares. Magical Realism has a lot of content to be studied in order to fully understand it. The term magical realism was first introduced by Franz Roh in 1925. He was a German art critic who started the idea of magical realism when he saw a new direction in painting. He used the term to characterize his paintings....   [tags: Realist Latin American Literature Essays]

Free Essays
957 words (2.7 pages)