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The influence of Uncles and Stories on Alba and of the Wife on the Colonel

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The influence of Uncles and Stories on Alba and of the Wife on the Colonel. Do these represent to the characters a shift towards or away from reality? In the midst of wandering souls, telepathy, dreams, tibetan dances, tunnels of book, pendulums, and vegetarian diets, Isabel Allende provides Little Alba with a talismanic, haunting and magical world to inhabit. These however, manage to survive the passage of time only through those who practice and tell of these arts: Uncles and Stories. The stories of these uncles eventually become heirlooms passed on to Little Alba. Whilst Great Uncle Marcos' and Uncle Nicolas' anecdotes seem to serve as a vehicle to move away from reality, Uncle Jaime's practicality seem to be the main force behind Alba's eventual shift towards reality. Gabriel Garcia Marquez will not allow the Colonel to get lost in the hopes and illusions raised by the rooster. He therefore provides him with a constant reminder of the reality of the hard times they are living and are probably yet to come - his wife. The latent presence of uncles In Allende's The House of the Spirits begins to be felt by the reader as early as the beginning of chapter one . The delivery of the body of Uncle Marcos and all his possessions (Adende, 9) ...read more.


Death lurk the aging couple. Women in Garca Mrquez's No One Writes To The Colonel merge into one - the Colonel's wife who is the practical, realistic complementary half to the Colonel. She suggests selling the clock , and rooster and asks for a loan on their wedding rings. She no longer has as much faith in Fridays as the Colonel has, and has come to understand that eternally waiting for something that hasn't come for the past fifteen years will only culminate in death, which was 'The only thing that comes for sure' (Garca Mrquez, 41). She is aware there are, unfortunately, physical and material needs to eating is probably her main concern. The wife, unlike the Colonel, is aware 'You can't eat hope' (Garca Mrquez, 43). Her presence in the Colonel's everyday life is, therefore, a constant force behind a gradual shift towards understanding what frightens the Colonel the most; reality. The Colonel is tom between his and the town's hopes of the rooster winning the upcoming cock fight and his wife's awareness of their critical situation. Little Alba also seemed to grow tom between the my~ world of magic, dreams, and imagination, and the system~ medical treatises traditional of the rational, more practical world of her uncle Jaime and Esteban Trueba himself. ...read more.


By the end of the novel Clare's habit of writing and Great-Uncle Marcos's tales become Alba's sharpest weapon against the passage of time, oppression and imprisonment. In a notebook given to her by Ana Diaz, she tried to record the small events of the women's section of the jail, how she sat with a child in each arm and told them magic stories from the enchanted trunks of [her] Great-Uncle Marcos until they fell asleep(Allende 427). Alba has changed since the first time she read these magic stories, thus the versions she now tells to the prisoners are bound to have changed as well, they have become fen of a fairy-tale and more of an inspiration and source of strength to survive their reality. The mosquito netting appears to be the most pronounced barrier between the Colonel's world and the Wife's world. This is probably the most effective motif to convey its connotation - division between the couple's thoughts and feelings, needs and wants. Even though constipation and October are haunting the Colonel, his world is built on hope and dignity, whilst the wife is 'fed up with resignation and dignity (Garca Mrquez, 46). In a cold manner, the wife points out to the Colonel, Twenty years of waiting for the little colored birds which they promised you after every election, and all we've got out of it is a dead son. ...read more.

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