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"The Shadow of the Wind" by Carlos Ruiz Zafon Analysis

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Introduction

The Cemetery of Forgotten Books Carlos Ruiz Zafon, the author of The Shadow of the Wind, was born in Barcelona, Spain, in 1964. Becuase of the obvious disparody of timeline between the author's birth and the occurance of the Psanish civil war that he writes so much about, it is unclear as to why Zafon would have such an in-depth knowledge of the events. However, owing to his strong sense of nationality, as exemplified by the publishing of multiple pamphlets in his 20s that detailed the reasons for Spain to become an economic powerhouse and financial leader of Europe, his decision as to why he would choose this subject is fairly obvious. The book in question was published in 2001, eight years after Mr. ...read more.

Middle

This is apparent in the writing style in The Shadow of the Wind, with multiple spanish words being implimented in order to further immerse the reader in the Spain setting and Spanish dialogue, as well as to add to the already shaky credibility of the author's expertice on the Spanish civil war. The language used also adds depth to the characters, with certain native words being used more frequently by characters who have more difficulty leaving the past behind, and recurring theme throughout the book. Thus, with this infussion of Sspanish language, Zafon expresses his own cultural background and underlying lingual alliegence, but also, intentionally or inadvertantly, develops the characters and their movement in the storyline and maturity timeframe in the amount of ?native? langauge used. ...read more.

Conclusion

If Mexican spanish has as large a role in the novel as the mere writing itself would suggest, then culture has a far greater and longer lasting effect on language and indentidy than previously hypothesized. Ethnicity may play a secondary role to the nature of the language used in a novel, but the driving force behind ?foreign? words besides English that are used could instead be the culture that the piece is written in, thus eliminating the significance of cultural rearing. Although the subject matter for the book was certainly taken and derived from the birthplace of the author, the styles used within the novel and the language implemented are a direct result of the Los Angeles cultural scene. ...read more.

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