Saturday, August 24, 2013

Finally Coming Full Circle

Towards the end of the documentary we watched yesterday, the narrator stated, "...a collection of people without a common cause." Frankly, I can't remember if he was referring to Colombia, Latin America, or the Buendia family, but truthfully, I don't think it matters. I believe this quote applies to all three. In my previous post, I had talked about how I viewed each Buendia as living within their own individual solitude. Even though the entire family is secluded, I view each family member as also being secluded from each other. Although I had realized this, I didn't quite grasp why or for what purpose.  However, when the narrator said "...a collection of people without a common cause," everything completely clicked for me, like an epiphany.
We've talked about how Macondo is a metaphor for Colombia. Now I think the Buendia family, or at least aspects of it, is a metaphor for all of Latin America. The family is a bunch of secluded individuals who continuously make the same mistakes, never learning from the Buendias who came before them. Each have different goals. Whether it be Arcadio and his obsessive need for power and order. Whether it be Colonel Aureliano Buendia and his failed initiative to bring down the corrupt Conservative party. Or Jose Arcadio Buendia and his endless pursuit for practical knowledge. The family never quite is in sync with each other. Just as Mrs. Quinet pointed out that Latin America was never in sync during the post-colonial period. Gabriel Garcia Marquez, as well as other Latin Americans, attempted to give Latin American its own identity. Their problem? It didn't have a obvious identity. They had no common cause.  They were a melting pot of idgenious peoples, Europeans, and international imperialist/traders. They worked against each other, instead of along side each other.
Maybe this is why Garcia Marquez and so many other artists turn to magical realism to give Latin America an identity. As we saw in the documentary, this magic is ingrained in everyday life throughout all of Latin America. Maybe that is their "common cause."

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