Strange Pilgrims Analysis

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At the articulation of G. G. Marquez’s name the term which immediately crosses the readers’ mind is magical realism. In his much acclaimed “Strange Pilgrims” Marquez perfectly embodies magical realism as a technique of revamping the marvelous into actual existence. Incorporating the elements of macabre and fantastic, the stories of the anthology reverberate with apparently familiar events that take on magical and strange implications as the Latin American characters attempt to come to terms with a foreign environment. Marquez aptly shows his taste for magical realism, the perfect mélange of fantasy and hyperbole exhibited in a framework of reality, which pervades throughout the stories of “Strange Pilgrims”. His narration is so serious and…show more content…
Though the two-word phrase appears to be contradictory, magical realism is an appropriate concept for a very powerful artistic form that has continued and lasted all the way through history and has been the object of considerable research. Magical realism is, according to American Heritage Dictionary, a “literary style or genre originating in Latin America that combines fantastic or dreamlike elements with reality” (qtd. in Rios). Though magical realism has been used in Europe, Africa, Australia, the U.S.A. and Latin America for many years, the German art critic Franz Roh (1890-1965) is said to have been the first to use this term officially in 1925 (Cuddon 487), due to the necessity of providing a suitable title for the “work of certain German painters of the period” (487). Roh finds in their work the “portrayal of the imaginary or the fantastic in a realistic or rational manner through sharp-focus images” (Rajimwale 519). Continuing with its development are Miguel Angel Asturias (1899-1974), Angel Flores (1900-1992), and especially Alejo Carpentier (1904-1980). Asturias defines magical realism as the “process of the mythification of nature which can be seen in the magic world picture of the indigenous peoples” (qtd. in Imbert 4) of America. Angel Flores in his “Magical Realism in Spanish American Fiction” (1955) writes that magical realism is “the transformation of the ordinary and the everyday into the awesome and the unreal” where time “exists in a kind of timeless fluidity and the unreal happens as part of reality” (qtd. in Rios). Upholding Flores’ definition the American fiction writer Holland Rogers says that in magical realism “time is not linear, causality is subjective, and the magical and the ordinary are one and the same” (Rogers). Both of them stress the fact
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