Chronicle Of A Death Foretold Review

Since its publication in 1981, Gabriel Garcia Marquez’s novelHistory of a Death Foretoldhas been regarded as a alone literary work by both the populace and critics. Through the usage of charming pragmatism, Marquez, a celebrated Columbian writer, creates a non-linear first-person narrative, which is presented as a combination of several literary devices – fable and symbolism, sarcasm and moralism, journalistic manner and psychological portraiture.

Based on the existent historical event that occurred in Columbia in 1951 and invented antic constituents, the fresh depicts the supporter Santiago Nasar and his slaying through the point of views of townspeople 27 old ages subsequently.

However, Marquez masterfully intertwines these point of views with Santiago’s dreams, therefore supplying a glance of the character’s interior universe. As the storyteller provinces, “He’d dreamed he was traveling through a grove of lumber trees where a soft mizzle was falling, and for an blink of an eye he was happy in his dream”. Due to such an unusual manner of representation, Santiago appears as a 3-dimensional character that is uncovered through his emotions, actions and ideas, although his word picture is indirect.

On the contrary, the portraiture of other characters  is direct ; as the narrative progresses, Marquez exposes townspeople in much item, uncovering their biass, unfairness, inhuman treatment and green-eyed monster. Despite the fact that everyone knows of the extroverted slaying, they do non do any effort to forestall it. Hence, using to such stylistic devices as symbolism and fable, Marquez implicitly or explicitly addresses the subjects of morality, artlessness, exploitation, destiny, guilt and honor.

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For case, he employs scriptural allusions ( like an image of a Christ, sacrificial lambs or a white suit ) to indicate at Santiago’s artlessness. Although the citizens use the rules of honor as justification for the character’s slaying, they act out of enviousness instead than out of justness, as Santiago, a representative of the upper category, is a affluent, fine-looking and outstanding immature Arab. Similarly, the symbols emerged in Santiago’s dreams reflect his naivete and free spirit.

While the developed subjects are familiar, Marquez complicates them with assorted psychological elements, showing equivocal judgements and showing contradictory point of views. Despite the fact that the characters do non admit their guilt, the Santiago’s slaying hangouts people: “For old ages we couldn’t speak about anything else. Our day-to-day behavior, dominated so by so many additive wonts, had all of a sudden begun to whirl around a individual common anxiety”. Through the changeless usage of sarcasms, Marquez exposes the civilization that is preoccupied with common ideals instead than with persons. Defending virginity among adult females of the upper category, the male characters turn to sexual maltreatment of other females, as is the instance with Victoria Guzman and her girl.

In this context, the writer challenges the beliefs of the Colombian society and, in a concise and clear manner, shows the negative impact of these ideals on townspeople. While the manner, characters and subjects are cardinal to Marquez’s narrative, the scene and secret plan besides play a instead important function. Choosing an invented Columbian town for his narrative, Marquez creates an ambiance that implicitly influences the characters’ actions and evokes supernatural forces. Describing the twenty-four hours of Santiago’s slaying, the storyteller draws a analogue between the dreams and the character’s decease, between the conditions and the occurred calamity. As Marquez ( 1996 ) depicts, “The conditions was funeral, with a cloudy, low sky and the midst odor of still Waterss, and at the minute of the bad luck a thin mizzle like the one Santiago Nasar had seen in his dream grove was falling.

Such an image reflects the overall temper of the citizens, indicating at their internal and external struggles. As the scene inHistory of a Death Foretoldreveals, female characters are in a changeless hunt for new worlds and assorted forebodings because of male laterality over adult females. In this respect, Marquez intensifies the suspense that is associated with the slaying ; while the offense is mentioned at the really beginning of the narrative, the enigma is non resolved, as the narrative unfolds. Making an effectual expounding that sets the overall tone of the history, Marquez invariably uses boding to give some hints to the described event ; nevertheless, he employs an unfastened stoping device to promote readers’ personal opinions.

Associating the secret plan to character portraiture, the writer identifies the characters’ grounds for non forestalling the slaying.  Harmonizing to Alonso ( 1999 ) , “the novel is rather careful in set uping the complex web of relationships that tied the storyteller to all supporters of the tragic plot”. Such an attack reveals that Marquez is more concerned with psychological facets instead than with factual inside informations of Santiago’s decease.

Therefore, Gabriel Garcia Marquez’s novelHistory of a Death Foretoldreflects the universe, where natural and supernatural, world and unreality are so closely affiliated that, even despite the employed journalistic devices, the occurred event is invariably shaded. Using assorted elements of charming pragmatism in his narrative, the writer inquiries cultural and societal stereotypes formed in the privy environment of Latin America. As Pelayo ( 2001 ) provinces, “In fact, most of his Hagiographas were both inspired by, and modelled after, his maternal grandparents, his parents, and the narratives they told him when he was turning up”  . Through anecdotal grounds Marquez reconstructs his ain yesteryear and the yesteryear of his people ; really, it is this peculiar grounds that enables him to show a more profound portraiture of the calamity and achieve necessary pragmatism in the history.


  1. Alonso, C. J. ( 1999 ) Writing and ritual inHistory of a Death Foretold.In: H. Bloom ( ed. ) ,Gabriel Garcia Marquez.
  2. New York, Chelsea House Publishers.
  3. Berg, M. G. ( 1986 ) Repetitions and contemplations inHistory of a Death Foretold.In: B. Shaw and N. Vera-Godwin ( explosive detection systems.
  4. ) ,Critical Positions on Gabriel Garcia Marquez. Lincoln, Society of Spanish and Spanish-American Surveies. pp.139-156.
  5. Marquez, G. G. ( 1996 )History of a Death Foretold. London, Penguin.
  6. Pelayo, R. ( 2001 )Gabriel Garcia Marquez: A Critical Companion. Westport, Greenwood Press.

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Chronicle Of A Death Foretold Review. (2019, Dec 06). Retrieved from

Chronicle Of A Death Foretold Review
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