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foreshadowing and flashback have on the novel's development

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The significance of time as shown in Chronicle of a Death Foretold and The House of the Spirits. The fragmentation of time features strongly in Chronicle of a Death Foretold by Gabriel Garc�a M�rquez1 and The House of the Spirits by Isabel Allende2. They both highlight the significant impact that time, and the past, has on narrative. It plays a key role in the development of both novels through the authors' use of structure. This structure is by no means linear, but an instrument in creating recurring themes. The numerous instances of foreshadowing and flashback have a great impact on both novels' development. The thought that the past, present and future are closely entwined also lays the basis for fate, as repetition leads the reader to believe that the future is set and unchangeable. Time also gives the reader an insight into the recollection of the past and how witnesses can be unreliable. These two novels portray different methods of remembering the past. In Chronicle of a Death Foretold, M�rquez interviews people who were present at the time whilst in The House of the Spirits Allende uses diaries as documented testimonies. The past is a very important element in the lives of both writers. This aspect is highly amplified through their writing both on a personal level as well as a political and cultural level. ...read more.


This is shown through her submissiveness on the point of her marriage. She sees that she is "going to be married soon...to Rosa's fianc�"4. Clara is so certain about this point that she does nothing to try and stop it. She believes that the future cannot be changed and later that month "Esteban Trueba...showed up at the door to ask for Clara's hand."5 This frequent use of foreshadowing throughout both novels helps create a sense of fate at work. The use of testimonies is interspersed throughout both books. The memories of witnesses are tested by time as M�rquez finds in Chronicle of a Death Foretold. What he encounters is a town full of people with varying and often conflicting memories of the events he is investigating, just as they had differing views and perspectives on the victim. Consequently, what begins as an attempt to fill the gaps, to find out once and for all what really happened that "dark and drizzly morning"6 - or was it "bright and sunny"7? - becomes instead a parody of any attempt to recapture and reconstruct the past. He describes it as trying to "put the broken mirror of memory back together from so many scattered shards."8 An impossible task when some pieces are forever lost. Marquez illustrates how pointless it is to expect to find a single 'truth' as there is no one single perspective which has precedence. ...read more.


This use of personal as well as political and cultural past gives the novels a certain realistic standing. Time is used as a gate way through which many aspects of these novels can be reached. Different view points can be attained as can the change of opinion through time. Fate is woven through time which binds the past and future even closer together. Recounts are a commonly used method of rediscovering the past. Through Chronicle of a Death Foretold we learn of the impossible task of reconstructing the truth, as many believe that the whole truth can never be known especially after so many years. In The House of the Spirits Clara's writings are used as a way of piecing together their "true" family history. This personal history is added to the political and cultural past that encompasses the novels. Time plays a key role constructing and revealing a whole dimension of these novels. 1 Gabriel Garc�a M�rquez, Chronicle of a Death Foretold, Penguin Books, Australia, Victoria, 1996. 2 Isabel Allende, The House of the Spirits, Black Swan, Great Britain, 1990. 3 Gabriel Garc�a M�rquez, op. cit., p. 18. 4 Gabriel Garc�a M�rquez, op. cit., p. 103 5 Ibid., p. 103 6 Ibid., p. 12 7 Ibid., p. 12 8 Ibid., p. 5 9 Isabel Allende, op. cit., p. 18. 10 Ibid., p. 233 11 Ibid., p. 107 12 Isabel Allende, My Invented Country - A Memoir, Harper Perennial, London, 2004. 13 Ibid., p. 176. 14 Isabel Allende, op. cit., p. 20. ...read more.

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