Journey Back to the Source: Alejo Carpentier: Viaje a la semilla (; Journey Back to the Source), for instance, set in 19th-century Cuba, is told in reverse. The Cuban novelist who invented the phrase “lo real maravilloso americano,” Alejo Carpentier considered “Journey Back to the Source” (“Viaje a la semilla”) to . Journey Back to the Source Analysis and Quiz According to Carpentier, language is an artificial, alienating construct, almost like structured.

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Earlier, along with his male friends, he has visited a dance hall. The storyteller makes comprehensible and forces the reader back through the text the otherwise indecipherable death of the marquesa by water.

Unlike Carpentier’s later work, where the “marvelous” accrues from the juxtaposition of different realities, this story depends on a magician and an explicitly literary trick. Cancel reply Your email address will not be published. This was a group of stories all told in radically different styles, first published in English by Victor Gollancz in and translated from the original Spanish by the Bloomsbury Group diarist Frances Partridge.

Nor does he spoil it in the telling. In the penultimate section of the story this reversal of time accelerates very rapidly. Once he has reset time’s direction and lit the lamps, the Afro-Cuban sorcerer and his magical reality vanish into the text. When Melchor is not there, his closest friends are the household dogs, with whom he shares his life. Don Marcial only does moderately well in his college examinations, and then learns less and less at school.

Critics dispute whether the conclusion represents a glorious return to nature or a dismal annihilation of the human race.

Journey Back to the Source (Viaje a la Semilla) by Alejo Carpentier, |

Print this article Print all entries for this topic Cite this article. He finally renounces the light, and all grows dark, warm, moist again. A mumbling old black man roves the ruins of a dilapidated colonial mansion being demolished by workmen.

They move back into the city from their country estate and get married. He is oppressed by the legal documentation involved in the sale of his house. Aalejo Marcial gradually recovers and retracts the dying confession he has made to his priest. This antithesis is too simple, since the fiction enacts an exuberant, uniquely human contemplation of the dismal reality, always and forever impending, of the annihilation of our last trace.

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For a more extended carpentieer of its kind, see his novel, The Kingdom bqck this World El reino de este mundo. As he “slips towards life,” everything else in the house rushes still faster and farther back: Wells and observes that film runs its action backwards or forwards carpenttier equal ease. Though the new growth may be unrecognizable, seeds in clay and water do come up again. A door frame lets in the darkness. The Cuban novelist who invented the phrase “lo real maravilloso americano,” Alejo Carpentier considered “Journey Back to the Source” “Viaje a la semilla” to be the story from which his maturity as a writer began.

He has taken jouney mistress following a period of mourning after the death of his wife. He begins using baby-talk.

It’s Magical Realism: Journey Back to the Source

Then, copy and carpentied the text into your bibliography or works cited list. With one or two minor exceptions, Carpentier delivers this chronological illusion very successfully. What is important, then, is not the source but rather the journey, the stories people spin out in idleness as they wait for death, a destination reached by the “hours growing on the right-hand side of the clock.

Carpentier at Wikipedia Background, biography, magical realism, major works, literary style, further reading. Because each style has its own formatting nuances that evolve over time and not all information is available for every reference entry or article, Encyclopedia.

Carpentier in Depth Spanish video documentary and interview with Carpentier Your email address will not be published.

The furniture in his house grows taller. About Us Advertising Clients Contact.

Walls have hack their paper like snakes shed their old skins; capitals lie fallen against their natural propensities, yet the vines recognize their affinity with the acanthus of fallen columns and twine round them. Friends take their presents back home and Don Marcial lives in his house alone as a bachelor. Nor does the story propose as Carpentier’s later work does that the man’s magic is real in his world though not in ours: He begins to play with toy soldiers, and takes to sitting on the floor and hiding under the clavichord.

The house sourde its contents grow younger.


First published jourheythe same year as Jorge Luis Borges ‘s Ficciones and collected in War of Time”Journey Back to the Source” starts from kourney idea so simple and so universal that a six-year-old has uttered it, “What if we could live our lives backwards?

Cite this article Pick a style below, and copy the text for your bibliography. The next day the demolition crew return to find the house has gone, and time progressing in its normal manner. This story is a good example of the literary genre.

With its search for illusory origins, its loving descriptions of colonial luxury, its contrast between past and present, its typical rather than individual protagonist, and its account of the material decline of an effete aristocracy, the story adumbrates much of Carpentier’s later writing. Thus, gradually, delightedly, the reader realizes that he is moving not forward but backward in time.

Journey Back to the Source by Alejo Carpentier PDF

When the doctor shakes his head to indicate that there is no hope, the dying man feels better at once. This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Outside the house, before the old man acts, a rich, baroque, typically encrusted description establishes the simultaneity of decay and renewal.

He thus supplements the other story we have just been told and returns us to our own forward time. He visits his father who is ill in bed. The ruined marquess trades bankruptcy for mourning, mourning for romance, romance for spiritual crisis, spiritual crises for toy grenadiers, the groom, and the only true perspective on a house—the one from jkurney floor.

He forgets his own name, and before his christening exists in a world of touch alone.

The next day the workmen return, but the house they were to demolish is gone, the statue of Ceres carted off and sold. Although the story includes other Afro-Cubans, he is not among them.

Since “seed” in English denotes semen, which is masculine, spurting out to join the egg, it cannot be used to describe the trip back up the vaginal canal jjourney our source.

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