"I try not to go to conferences. 1 don't know what to do there.

And I found this one very intimidating. President you
know hes a friend-personally (n¥ited me and I told him ( would go. But
then 1looked at the agenda and at the 60 or so and saw the
French had drawn up subjects that were ent(rely abstract. 'Culture and
Society,' for example. What would 1 do at a seminar with Claude Simon
on culture and society? , ..
"I think a lot about culture, but about popular culture. And I'm
the product of a culture of immediate and burning problems. The French
move in the: thoroughly glacial sphere aT pure ideas. And they don't
cumb easily. They are brought up and fonned in academic tournaments. (
don't like to theorize.. I told Mitterrand that I considered myself culturally
incompatible and that ones own limitations is a privilege of
age. Mitterrand, who is a man of culture, understood this very well."
134 Gnlc Sludy GuIdo 10 Gn:al LlrcmlUrc; LilCfory MaH<n
"In a literary panorama dominated byJulio Cortazars Hopscacc11,
Lezama Lima's Paradiso. Carios Fuentes's A Change of Shin, and
erma Cabrera Infante:; Thee Trapped Tigers," critic Emir Rodriguez Mon-
egal has written, "all experimental works to the limit of expertmentation
itself; aU hard and demanding on their readers." Garcia Marquez, tn his
One Hundred Years oJ Soliwde:, "with an Olympian indifference to alien
technique, sets himself free to narrate, with an Incredible speed and
apparent innocence, an absolutely linear and chronological story ... with
its beginning, middle and end. "I
These authors, Cortazar, Jose Lezama Lima, Fuentes, and Cabrera
Infante, writing out of their shared Latin American experience, might be
studied with Garcia Marquez both because they all belong to the same
all' movement, the Boom, and. no less because they are all e:xpenmemal
writers In their choice of fonn. With other writers belonging to this
"Boom," Garcia Marquez shares the cultural geography of Latin America.
Adding Mana Vargas Uosa to the list, they share the experience
of exile and a degree of cosmopolitanism. Although Jorge Luis Borges
does not belong chronologically to thts movement, he has influenced all
these writers; the frequent metaphor of the labyrinth in the works of
GarcCa Marquez may be traced to its appearance in the work of Borges. A
course in Latin American fiction would include
Borges, Cortazar, Juan Rulfo, AlejO Carpentier, Vargas Llosa, Fuentes,
Cabrera Infante, Miguel Angel Asturias, Lezama Lima, and, of course,
Garcia Marquez.
Garcia Marquez shares themes with the Guatemalan wrtter
Asturias, who 1s also a Nobel laureate. AstUrias wrote a trilogy on the
banana boom and the United Fruit Company invasion of Latin Amenca.
In El Sellar presidel1ce (1946; translated as TIle President, 1963), Asturias
Many critlCS have nouced that Faulkners Yoknapatawpha
County. the location in whtch several of his worltS are set. 1n ItS auton·
amy and cultural conststenq' bears some relalton to Macondo. which is
the background for several of the novels and stories of Garda Mi1rquez.
An entire course could be titled "William Faulkner and Gabriel Garcia
Marquez," especially since Garda Marquez has adcnowledged Faulkner
as a major influence on his work.
He has written romance in Love In The TIme OJ Cholera, but in 50
speculative a manner that it is difficult to imagine another work with
which tt mIght be compared. He has wntten a family saga in Gne Hundred
Years oj Solitude, but because hIS work IS so rooted in its setting, one can-
not profitably study It alongside other family sagas. such as Thomas
Manns Buddenbroohs (1901).
Gabnel Garcia Mdrquc::;
deals with the theme of dictatorship, and its main character is a compos-
ite of several Latin Amertcan dictators. There is, Asturias has said, an
"intuition" possessed by these figures. "<! son of sense of smell or power
of divination that dictators have, and which means that it's not everyone
who can be one. "1
Mark Frisch has proposed teaching One Hundred Years of Solitude
with Tile Sound and Ille "Viewmg Faulkner as a novelist in the New
World,'" Garda Marquez has hImself remarked that "the Faulltnerian
method is very effective for relating Latin American He has also
noted that Yoknapatawpha County in fact has banks on the Gulf of Mex·
Yet, because the two are so different in approach, with Astunas a
politically committed realist, they would not necessarily be studied
together. Other LatIn American writers who have written on the subject
of the indigenous dictatorships are Carpentier, the Cuban novelist, in EI
recurso dd mttodo (1974; translated as Reasons oj State, 1976), and
Augus[Q Roa Bastos in Yo el Supremo (1, the Supreme, 1975)'
Garcfa Marquez has combined several genres. His work is bibli-
cal in tone and epiC in scope, both genres working tn One Hundred Years
oj Solitude. Astudy of biblical myth In the novel would certainty include
thiS worle
Gne: HUlldred Years oj Soll£ude, which creates an autonomous
community and traces its founding, might be studied with William
Faulkners novel Absalolll, Absalom! (19361 although the pOints of VIew
are diamemcally opposed. Faulkner locates savagery and barbaric InJus-
Uce in the settling of hIS community, while Garda Marquez finds grace,
Justice, and compaSSion 10 the early days of Macondo.
Garcia Marquez in the late 1960S
136 Gal.: Swdy GlIldC1 10 Gn:ollllcrCllurc: lllcrary MoSlcrs
· '" ...... ,
This IS a Cow. She must be milked every morning so that she will produce mlllt,
and the milk must be boiled In order 10 be <with coffee to make coffee nnd
The first of these thre.e quotations is [rom a famous passage in One Hun-
rlf-ed Years of Solitude, by Gabriel GarcIa Marquez, in which, after a plag!le
of insomma, the whole village of Macondo is affected by loss of memory.
From Carlos Fuentes. Gabriel Garcia Mdltjuez and the Invenllon oj
Amerleo, E. Allison Peers Lectures, no. 2 (Liverpool: Liverpool UniverSity
Press. 1987) © Carlos Fuentes. ThiS lecture was delivered on 13 March
1987 in the Senate House of the Umversity of Liverpool.
From Thll Pafat:t/ of )usriCf:; A Colombian Traqf:dy INew York.
& london: FourW/tlls Eight Windows. 199)).
"'Aqu( no pasa nada.' 'Nothing happens
here.' The obligatory pause in the conversation,
the look that waits to see whether the listener
knows the reference. The moment's pause to let
the quotation marks smk in. I know the passage
well. It's from the Garcia Marquez. classic, One
Hundred Yaars of Solituda. The book that a
former Commandante Supremo of the M'19 Rev-
olutionary Movement-Alvaro Fayad-used to
say was the only text where a Colombian could
recover the history of his country, the onlY
required reading for a Colombian revolutIon·
j need only, to malte them reappear, pronounce. the namel; Balbec, Venice, Flo.
renee, within whose syllables had gradually accumulated nllthe longing Inspired
In me by the pl:lces for which they slood.
MHow realities are to be learned or discovered is perhaps too great a quesl\on for
you or me to detennlne, CrnlYlus; but It Is worthwhile to have reached evw this
conclUSion, thnt they are: 10 learned and sought for, not from lIallltl but much
better through themselv5 than through names ...
MThnl is clear, Socrates ...
50 varied is the fiction of Garcta
Marquez that though he could be studied in a
course on literary modernism as a movement,
he might JUSt as effectivdy appear in a course
on postmodernism In fiction, which would
draw on the work of CalVino, Don Delillo,
Cabrera Infante, Pynchon and other post·
modernIst writers. As a political novelist,
Garda Marquez mIght be studied with
authors such as Fyodor Dostoyevsky, joseph
Conrad. 19nazio Silane, and Andre Malraux.
A course in the theme of brotherhood in the
novel might include Conrad, Faullmer.
Garcia Marquez, and the cinema of Luis
ciellca (1983; translated as I ... RigobCi1Cl Melt-
dill: An Indian Woman tn Guatemala, 1984) and
the Mexican American writer Rudolfo Anaya's
Bless Me, Ultima (972) whIch has a Mexican
ico and thus the. Caribbean. so that "in a way, Faulkner 1S a Latin Amen-
can wrtter. ",
Olle Hundred Years oj Solitude might also be studied alongside the
novel of fantasy, although this study would deemphasize the strong.polit-
Ical context that runs through the entire noveL Yet, GarCia Marquez<could
certainly be studied alongside writers who partake of the techniques of
magic realism. even if they are from other cultures; these would include
Toni Morrison and Salman Rushdie. An examination of early examples of
the use of fantasy in the works of Edgar Allan Poe. Guy de Maupassam,
and Henry James could lead to a discussion of Garda Marquez. Latin
American examples of fantasy might include Hombres de mafz
(1949; translated as MaiZe.: Men, 1975). Carpentier's El rdno de este mUlldo
(1949; translated as The Kingdom oj This World, 1957). and the short sto·
ries of Julio Conazar!
A course tn "The Apocatypl1c Vision in Contemporary American
Fiction" might place Garda Marquez alongside Thomas Pynchon. julio
Cortazar, and john Barth. GarCia Marquez could also be studied in a
course on modernIsm that would place his work alongside works by
Marcel Proust, halo Calvino, and Robert Musil. as well as those of james
Joyce and Virginia Woolf.
Chronicle OJ A Demll Foretold partakes of the genre of the detec-
ltve. story, but the diffe.rences so outweigh the Similarities that it ,cannot
be compared to examples of the detective novel, such as those wrttten in
the Untted States by Dashiell Hammett or Raymond Chandler. He has
written an histOrical novel, but The General In His Labyrinth belongs so
particularly to Latin America, that it should be studied alongside
tion works chronicling the life of 5im6n Bolivar, rather than works of ftc·
It seems. however, that The Autlunu oj the Patriarch, which uses a
stream-of-consciousness technique, might be compared to the works of
European modernists such as those of joyce-particularly in his Ulysses
(1922)-or Woolf. Equally, a course in the latin American novel of the
dictator could be organized, begInmng with TIral1do Ballderas (1926;
translated as The Tyrant (Tirana Ballderas): A Novel oJWarnl Lands. 1929)
by the Spanish author Ramon del Valle IncIan. and including El sellor
presidellte, as well as Reasons oJ State, It the Supreme, and TIle Autumn oj
the Patriarch.
More advanced students could study One Hunrln:d Years oj Soli-
tude with lesser known works from other South Amencan countnes,
such as Rigoberta Menchu's Me Llama Rigoberta MendlU y asi nacto Ill! COII-
138 Gulc Study Guldel 10 Gmu Lilualurc; Llh:rnr.Y Mallen
Gabriel GardrtMdrque.:: 139
Volume 5
Gabriel Garcia Mdrquez
joan Mellen
~ A L E 01
Son Ft,:rncJ,C'

.c1 '''!;
MatthewJ. Broccoli llnd Richard Layman, Edllorlal DlrUlOfS
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Prinled In the United States of America
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A Note to tltt Reader
by Alvin Ktrnan vii
Acimowledgments _ _ x
ABOUT GABRIEL GARCIA MARQUEZ ••..•.••••......•...........•.... 7
Personal Data 7
His Childhood and Biographical Glimpses 10
Awards and Recognition 20
GARCIA MARQUEZ AT WORK •.••.....•..............•......••.••.. 24
Getting Establlsl"d 24
Techniques 28
Snbject To Revision 46
Criticnl ReceptIoll 49
GARCIA MARQUEZ'S ERA.•.•..•...•...••.•..•..•..•.••....•.•.•.•. 60
Garcia Mdrquezs COl/lillY 60
Garefn Mdrqllezs Era alJd Time III HistolY 65
Lifestyle and Cull"re 76
GARCIA MARQUEZ'S WORKS.......•..•...•.•..•.....•.....•....... 83
SClipts and Screenplays 103