• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

Death in ‘One Hundred Years of Solitude’ and ‘The House of the Spirits’

Extracts from this document...


Death in 'One Hundred Years of Solitude' and 'The House of the Spirits' Attitudes toward death tend to differ between cultures. The Latin American novels 'One Hundred Years of Solitude' and 'The House of the Spirits' show us an attitude toward mortality that stems from many of the attitudes towards life itself. Death in the novels serves as a commentary on life, society, the characters and their spirituality. Each death and the way in which it is received, mourned and celebrated by the other characters is unique but each as significant as the life that preceded it. Consciousness transcends death and is inborn in the next generations ensuring that physical death is not the end. In other cases however a person 'dies' in a spiritual or emotional sense well before their actual physical mortality. The deaths are not incidental, rather the timing and manner of each is crafted and developed by the author for a distinct reason often reflecting the life, relationships and spiritual standing of the individual character. The reactions to death are unusual and often less dramatic than expected. This arises from the characters' belief that death isn't a permanent separation but instead, the creation of a more spiritual relationship. ...read more.


The names of both the novels imply a continuity of consciousness regardless of physical death, time or change. 'The House of the Spirits' is a title that doesn't refer to any particular person or event, but rather uses the house as a constant figure that holds the spirits, souls and consciousness's from previous generations. Likewise, 'One Hundred Years of Solitude' indicates a continuity of a feature, in this case solitude, over the entire novel. The very first character of the novel in a sense creates the solitude that remains with the subsequent generations in both a geographical and spiritual sense. Some characters cease to exist within the social and emotional world before the time of their actually physical passing. This often occurs due to a dramatic or emotionally scarring incident in their life. Colonel Aureliano Buendia and Colonel Gerineldo Marquez suffer the tragedies of war and withdraw into their own minds, neglecting their family, friends and social obligations. This is a social death that in many ways retracts a person from life to the same or greater extent as a physical death. Both these characters lose all capability of loving, and become emotionless and oblivious to the world revolving around them. ...read more.


The family sagas of 'The House of the Spirits' and 'One Hundred Years of Solitude' are not just the histories of the lives of the characters, but also the history of their deaths. The deaths are not incidental; the authors have employed them to convey messages. These messages are different and purposeful, some commenting on the importance of maintaining strong relationships and existence in the social world whilst still living, others implying the insignificance of physical death in spiritualistic lives. Whatever the individual meaning, in each novel, spirituality ensures an appreciation that death is not necessarily the end of being, it is just another stage. As Clara says 'Just as when we come into the world, when we die we are afraid of the unknown....dying is like being born; just a change.'9 1 Pg. 332 The House of the Spirits - Allende. 2 Pg. 337 The House of the Spirits - Allende 3 Pg. 190 One Hundred Years of Solitude - Marquez 4 Pg. 189 One Hundred Years of Solitude - Marquez 5 Pg. 178 One Hundred Years of Solitude - Marquez 6 Pg. 226 One Hundred Years of Solitude - Marquez 7 Pg. 469 The House of the Spirits - Allende 8 Pg. 240 One Hundred Years of Solitude - Marquez 9 Pg. 332 The House of the Spirits - Allende ?? ?? ?? ?? Page 1 ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our GCSE Capital Punishment section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related GCSE Capital Punishment essays

  1. What Is Donne's attitude to death in his poems? You should base you answer ...

    It also shows that he is not afraid of it. He then mentions that death isn't powerful as it is a slave to chance, fate, war and sickness. "Thou'rt slave to fate...and dost with poison, war, and sickness dwell", the use of negative imagery puts it down from something powerful to something meaningless.

  2. According to Colin Cunningham in Unit 6, the form and function of a building ...

    Thus, the function of the Colosseum played an important part in the form and structure. No. of words : 328 Part II essay Question: Why is it that the Romans, as Thomas Wiedemann says, "did not see what went on in the amphitheatre as something wicked" (Resource Book I, C11, p.101)?

  1. Is there any reason to suppose that I will survive my death?

    Both arguments therefore display reason to suppose there is life after death. Focusing on evidence throughout the world today, however, we can see additional cause to presume survival of death actually exists. One phenomenon providing evidence is the Near-Death Experience.

  2. Imprisonment - They said that she was mad when she locked herself in the ...

    It was a happy, relaxed time for us. We were working beneath us, so our work was not in the least bit taxing and we had plenty of time on our hands. My brother was blissfully unaware that his days on earth were numbered, and I do not think even

  1. Lying is a concept that has the disastrous potential to cause destruction but also ...

    Throughout the text we are also led to believe that lies have the ability to protect but more often than not this leads to further and more serious problems. The consequence of lying in the novel affected the way characters were able to, or not able to form proper relationships.

  2. Comparing Themes - The innovative and powerful structure of "As I Lay Dying" is ...

    Darl is the only character that knows that the minister conceived Jewel, and he manages to withhold this from the other in order to not divide the family, especially at such tribulating times. They also both hold honor in different things.

  1. Examine at least 2 reasons for believing in life after death

    In the case of Christianity, it seems that to have a good/heavenly afterlife, one has to believe in God and Jesus Christ, and avoid sinning. However Hume calls attention to fact that Christianity and other religions do not give any credit to those who, although sin and do not believe,

  2. Death and the Afterlife

    For this reason, it is never left unattended from the time of death to the burial. Those who sit with the body have the job of preparing the body for the burial and caring for the body. This period of time is known as the aninut.

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work