Like water for chocolate

6962 words 28 pages
Like Water for Chocolate
~Laura Esquivel~

Ms. Diamond

Magical Realism
At about the middle of the 19th century (when scientific objectivity became “vogue”), the influence of many social forces caused aesthetic taste to change from romantic idealism to realism. Many writers felt that romantics—with their focus on the spiritual, the abstract, and the ideal—were being dishonest about life as it really was. The realists felt they had an ethical responsibility to be honest.
To show life as it should be in order to show life “as it is,” the body of realist literature tends to eschew the elevated subject matter of tragedy in favor of the average, the commonplace, the middle classes and their
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The term "magic" relates to the fact that the point of view that the text depicts explicitly is not adopted according to the implied world view of the author. As
Gonzales Echevarria expresses, the act of distancing oneself from the beliefs held by a certain social group makes it impossible to be thought of as a representative of that society.
Authorial Reticence—Authorial reticence refers to the lack of clear opinions about the accuracy of events and the credibility of the world views expressed by the characters in the text. This technique promotes acceptance in magical realism. In magical realism, the simple act of explaining the supernatural would eradicate its position of equality regarding a person’s conventional view of reality. Because it would then be less valid, the supernatural world would be discarded as false testimony. The Supernatural and Natural—In magical realism, the supernatural is not displayed as questionable. While the reader realizes that the rational and irrational are opposite and conflicting polarities, they are not disconcerted because the supernatural is integrated within the norms of perception of the narrator and characters in the fictional world.
Common Themes
The idea of terror overwhelms the possibility of rejuvenation in magical realism. Several prominent authoritarian figures, such as soldiers, police, and sadists all have the power to torture and kill.


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