Discovering a Culture through Magical Realism Essay

Discovering a Culture through Magical Realism Essay

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Discovering a Culture through Magical Realism

   Every culture has a memorable type of literature. When one thinks of English literature, one thinks of William Shakespeare or Charles Dickens. The American writers Thoreau, Clemens, and Emerson bring to mind the days when America was still proving herself to be equal to the European countries. France had her own artists, such as Voltaire and Hugo, as did Spain with Cervantes and Dante. However, when one thinks of Latin America, what writers come to mind? Very few of these authors are as well known as those mentioned. However, through the concept of a previously unknown literature, the world is viewing Latin America in a new light. Magical Realism seems to have flourished in the warm, tropical climate and has bloomed so beautifully that scholars are at a loss to fully explain this concept and where it originated.

Many opinions exist as to the true origins of Magical Realism. Flores has claimed that Borges, with his accomplished writings, began the movement. Flores also believes The Metamorphosis, written by Kafka, greatly influenced Borges, while other theories support Franz Roh as the source of this new movement. It seems the phrase was first coined by Roh while describing a new method of artwork in the 1920’s. This new artwork combined reality with a small addition of a nonrealistic aspect. For the most part, the general idea follows the theory of Roh’s creation.

Each culture carves its own notch in the world of literature. America had to create her own new world of literature and still was criticized for not being like the other countries. It seems that when something is different, it is outcast and criticized to a much larger extent than should be. This situation...

... middle of paper ...

... actually originated. The allure of this literature and the controversy concerning it will keep it on a steady rise in popularity through changing times because it is capable of change itself. Magical Realism reminds one of the beauty and the magic that can be found in everyday life.

Works Cited

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. “Magical Realism: Post-Expressionism.” Magical Realism: Theory, History, Community. Ed. Lois Parkinson Zamora and Wendy B. Faris. Durham, N.C.: Duke UP, 1995: 15-31


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