Several different elements can create a fantastic story. One major element would be when the reader experiences hesitation while reading the story. According to Todorov’s definition of the fantastic, “The fantastic… must oblige the reader to consider the world of the characters as a world of living persons and to hesitate between a natural and a supernatural explanation of the events described” (Todorov). In “The Salamander” the reader hesitates when the narrator turns into a salamander. Turning into a salamander would fall into Todorov’s definition of a supernatural event without an explanation. The narrator st...
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...riences being in-between the stage of human and animal and in-between the stage of being alive and dead. The lines between these very distinct things were blurred. This blurriness created ambiguity which led to another major aspect of the fantastic, hesitation. Todorov’s definition of the fantastic includes hesitation and liminality, so then one can consider “The Salamander by Mercè Rodoreda as a fantastic story. One can also point out some similarities between Mercè Rodoreda and the narrator in “The Salamandra.” Both the narrator and Rodoreda are considered outcasts because they are and act different than the rest of society. Sometimes it can be a good thing to be different although it can be challenging and scary at times. Different usually means change and change usually means seeing life in a new perspective, which in different perspectives could be good or bad.
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