Monday, March 15, 2010

In the third segment of CADS, I was particularly drawn to two main things:

The arrival of the railroad to Macondo

With the introduction of the railroad, the people of Macondo are introduced to modernity: the movies, the phonograph, the telephone. And most (if not all of these things) are met with distaste and confusion. Interestingly enough, along with these introductions comes the first American, Mr. Herbert. His entrance is proceeded by the following quote:

En un pueblo escaldado por el escarmiento de los gitanos no había un buen porvenir para aquellos equilibristas del comercio ambulante que con igual desparpajo ofrecían una olla pitadora que un régimen de vida para la salvación del alma al séptimo día, pero entre los que se dejaban convencer por cansancio y los incautos de siempre, obtenían estupendos beneficios. (337)

It encompasses a distinct and obviously negative attitude towards Americans in Latin America that is humorously supported through the examination of the banana and later descriptions of the boisterous establishment made by them in Macondo.

The chapter which begins from the perspective of Úrsula as she prepares to send off José Arcadio to the seminary.

As she reflects on time and specific members of her family as an old woman, I think that there is a relationship between solitude and a specific condition/habit/fate that a person is born with/destined to have that leads to their solitude. As a result of being born with/destined to have this condition, I think it could be cracked up to be like original sin. For example, if we examine Coronel Aureliano Buendía, Úrsula says that he’s “un hombre incapacitado para el amor,” something that she sensed from the womb:

Una noche, cuando lo tenía en el vientre, lo oyó llorar…Ella (Úrsula), en cambio, se estremeció con la certidumbre de que aquel bramido profundo era un primer indicio de la temible cola de cerdo… (363)

This being his original sin or flawed condition ends up being his source of solitude. Continuing on in the chapter, I question solitude to be something that is suggested to be a part of the human condition – something that marks our lives to the extent that it separates and alienates us from others. For example, Remedios the Beauty’s beauty, Aureliano Segundo’s gluttonous lifestyle, or Úrsula’s conformity to the ways of the others around her (366). It is not initially what I would have considered solitude based on my previous idea of it, but more of what makes us unreachable for those around us.

And one other (big?) thought:

This book is formulated by different perspectives. Is this in an attempt to create one giant perspective? What does this mean in relation to the truth? Can truth be derived from a style like this?


  1. "Can truth be derived from a style like this?" Well, there's a question! What do you think?

  2. Megan!
    Tu comentario sobre la importacion de la modernidad al Macondo es muy interesante. Yo tambien pienso que hay una critica de la modernidad- GGM esta reconociendo los beneficios y las usas de los objetos que estan llegando, pero al mismo tiempo esta criticando la ideologia que es tambien importando....Como se lee en libros que critican acciones de colonizadores hay siempre una dimension sobre el progreso social que hace la tecnologia pero tambien hay un aspecto del prejuicio causado por los colonizadores....

    Sobre tu ultima pregunta: Im going to write this in English so I can convey my ideas ;)
    Today in Poli sci class we were studying J. S. Mill. I found it very interesting that he is in search of the Truth but aims to find this Truth by incorporating different elements and perspectives. He seems to believe that experience along with education in philosophy, mathematics and poetry can lead the way to the truth. So it seems that if we have a cup on the table that has writting all over it, the person sititing on the right can only see whats written in front of him, whereas the person on the left only has the view of the left. Together however, they can create a better image of what is actually in front of them! So by bringing in different perspectives, GGM could actually be leading us towards his perceived form of the truth!

    dunno if this makes sense!