Title: Role of honor and religion in the novella,” the chronicles of death foretold “ by Gabriel Garcia Marquez
Gabriel Garcia Marquez’s novel “Chronicle of a Death Foretold” is exemplary in showing the forgoing of the spirit of religion and justice in the name of man-made codes such as honor. The writer portrays an unnamed town where the most vicious of crimes can be committed in the name of honor. The Vicario brothers who brutally butchered Santiago Nasar are given a reprieve after three years of imprisonment. Is it not ironical that they had to stay in the prison only because there was no one to bail them out? Marquez repeatedly denounces the town folks of holding honor above religion. Throughout the novella, Marquez unmasks the absence of true religious values in the town and reveals the double standards of the townsfolk.
Marquez attacks the flimsy standards that prevail in the society, and also how people discard their religion. The three things forbidden by the Catholic church such as whores, alcohol and gambling freely flourish in the town. Even the church is corrupted when we see that “ nun had 80% hangover” (Marquez 71). The bishop’s behavior is objectionable when he expresses his intention of eating cock-comb soup, which is very costly and has a sexual implication. People carry on with their sinful lives without caring for redemption and salvation. Even the priest does not remember the ten Commandments of Catholicism! Marquez criticizes the honor codes as well as the legal system of the town where the lawyer stands in “legitimate defense of honor” (Marquez 48). The honor is so deep rooted in the heart of people that Prudencia will marry Pablo only if he murderers Santiago as one is supposed to avenge the wrong done to one’s honor.