Kevin O'Connor ANTH: 220 4/19/11
First to realize not verbally but in your heart, in your blood, in your whole thinking, that human beings right through the world go through the same agonies that one goes through: the loneliness, the despair, the depression, the extraordinary uncertainty, insecurity, whether they live ten thousand miles away or two thousand miles, or here, they are all psychologically bound together. If one realizes that profoundly in your guts, in your blood, in your heart, in your mind, then you are responsible.- J. Krishnamurti
“Solitude and the Devolution of Community ”
Whether you are raised in Europe, the United States, or Asia, you have a distinct history. You have a past, and a link to something greater than yourself. We are all the progeny of our ‘noble’ ancestors, and have some meaningful link to them. Our history shapes who we are as individuals, and who we are as a community. Our identity defines the lens we view the world through, and the decisions based on our inference, our politic. The politics change history which changes future generation's identity. As long as humans have been sentient, this circle of culture has shaped the way we live. What happens to a people when this cycle is broken, and their history is lost? As previously stated, history, politics, and identity are intertwined. Once the cycle is broken, there is a loss of all three of the interconnected ideas. The result of lost history is a tragic loss of identity. Once people lose their identity, they lose a big part of what makes them human. A broad sense of community, and a link to something greater, An ancestral link to each other. In the eyes of other, we nearly lose our status as humans. We become subhuman. When this piece of our humanity is lost, the result is nearly always subjugation and marginalization of those who’s identity is lost. Before the abolition of slavery and the civil rights movement in America, Africans were treated as lesser beings. The only way this subhuman treatment stopped entirely was once the African American community unified and changed their identity. They stopped allowing themselves to be walked on, effectively changing their history, and restarting the
cornering the means of production for themselves. and don’t let themselves be marginalized. We see a very similar example in Latin America. As a result of the Spanish colonization of the Americas. and leaving no option for the locals but to work picking bananas and picking cash crops for menial wages. The region was populated by Indian tribes. This wouldn’t be possible without the skills
. the forced devolution of community and collective individual solitude breaks the cycle.The civil rights movement was a direct result of the African American community organizing and not settling for anything less than equality. *HPI Cycle-shorthand for the cycle of History.* Nearly all of the modern governments in Latin America are the remnants of Spanish and other European power’s colonization. After the colonization and essential enslavement of the local population. there became a rift in the history and culture for the locals. More specifically. and the sense of community is revived. contemporary Colombia had no unified culture. but the social groups that do have stronger community ties bounce back from tragedy quicker.*“HPI cycle “* of their community. and Identity. Politics. Countries like Columbia and Guatemala became Banana Republics. I hypothesize that the breaking of these community’s HPI cycle is causally related to the continued subjugation.
I’m not saying that terrible things don’t happen to social groups that have a strong sense of community. Latin Americans have been subjugated. Massive world powers like the United States allowed their corporate powers to sweep in the newly freed indigenous people’s countries. For generations. who were organized in several clans from which derived the local monarchy who governed pre–Hispanic Colombia. Even after many Latin Americans have thrown off the chains of their colonizers. and take up massive amounts of land. they have been subjugated. I go back to the example of the African American experience . The cycle remains broken until the solitude is brought to an end.
José Arcadio was tempted by the gypsies to pursue knowledge by giving him small
.are responsible for naming things. Eve was tempted by the devil to take a bite of the fruit of knowledge. In Latin America. Their colonization resulted in millions of deaths and a completely devolved their community. time moving in circles. there are social leaders like Authors Rigoberta Menchu and Gabriel Marquez who wrote books to do the same. we have books like the Bible to fall back on to unite us.
Latin Americans differed from the rest of the world that due to their isolation for so long. By using these allusions he can further his points by making us relate to ideas we are already familiar with. In a similar fashion. and elements of many Latin American countries’ struggle for freedom from colonial rule. which were white and enormous. he brings up and touches on the ideas of forbidden knowledge. Marquez wrote a bible -esque pseudo history that incorporates a creation story.of community leaders like Martin Luther King or Malcolm X who galvanized the sense of community.
“At that time Macondo was a village of twenty adobe houses. and don’t identify with the religion of their subjugators. like prehistoric eggs. Marquez implemented many Biblical parallels in the novel also. In the Bible. left them very susceptible to disease when they were colonized. lineage and original sin and emphasizes the idea of killing to defend your manhood. built on the bank of a river of clear water that ran along a bed of polished stones. In colonial India.”(1) Marquez incorporates many allusions to make early Macondo seem almost Edenesk. Jose Arcadio Buendia and Ursula are similar to Adam and Eve. and that Jose Arcadio Buendia is chained to a tree (of Knowledge) when his curiosity results in his madness. Many Latin Americans had Catholicism forced on them. Latin Americans need their own book with deep meaning and powerful rhetoric to unite them. I think this is partly what Gabriel Marquez had in mind when he wrote “One Hundred years of Solitude”. As being of European descent. The world was so recent that many things lacked names. and in order to indicate them it was necessary to point. The founding of Macondo by the patriarchal Buendía Family could also be seen as a metaphor of the colonization of the future Colombia. there were leaders like Ghandi and Krishnamurti. in that they are the two original people . The founders of the imaginary town of Macondo.
Much like the fall of man in the Bible. Colonel Aureliano Buendia has various similarities to Christ. Fernanda explains Aureliano Babilonia's appearance by saying he arrived. the sores he gets under his armpits require that he keep his arms outstretched as in a crucifixion. The flood in the Bible destroyed the evil in the world. A one size fits all perspective on Latin American history. and ascended to heaven. is about the one hundred years that capitalism took hold of Macondo. The presence of a foreign fruit company in Macondo is related to many Latin American countries. It is too show how capitalism destroys the community and isolates us. Everyone is equal. One hundred years of capitalism could be a fitting title. while the flood in Macondo destroyed the evil banana company. In Macondo. Marquez is driving the point that the pressure that capitalism puts on the individual pits each individual against each other in a struggle to reach the top and destroys the sense of socialist altruism and community. there was no individual isolation because the community ties were so strong. That is the point of the book.‘bites’ of knowledge with small technologically advanced contraptions. even titles are shared. In the subtext of “one hundred years of solitude” lies a political statement. This form of socialism was so extreme that many of the residents shared the same names. monetary system or church. In Rigoberta Menchu’s book “I Rigoberta Me nchu”. but the individual solitude that arises from capitalism. who because of his purity gained God’s favor. The title of the book. The main reason these biblical parallels are drawn is to make a statement about the pursuit of knowledge. When we are isolated. The setting of the book is fake.
. The solitude is the individual solitude of each person on their own. in a basket of rushes. Despite Macondo being entirely isolated from the world. In early Macondo there was no government. she also writes of foreign corporations in Guatemala taking advantage of the locals. like Moses. so it can be more relatable to any Latin American. The flood after the Banana Massacre is a reference to Noah's flood. For example. corporate powers are free to subjugate and marginalize us. “One Hundred Years of Solitude”. It is not a statement of the location’s solitude. Remedios' ascension to heaven alludes to the ascension of the prophet Elijah. the people just took care of themselves and all worked together. the pursuit of knowledge on the part of Jose Arcadio led to the destruction of the community in Macondo and the subjugation of the residents.