Cristobo De's Reviews > La casa de Bernarda Alba

La casa de Bernarda Alba by Federico García Lorca
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M 50x66
's review
May 12, 2012

really liked it

I didn`t read the book, I didn`t watch the play: there is a movie directed by Mario Camus, which I enjoyed greatly, and judging by other reviews I think I haven`t missed much from the plot.
I came to write this because I am puzzled that so many people regard this as a "feminist play" or as an "allegory of Franco`s dictatorship". Amazing: to begin with, seems like the play was written in 1936, BEFORE Franco came to power. God knows Spain was not the perfect democracy before Franco, but there was nothing in Spanish history which could anticipate the horrors of his regime.
Then, as to the "feminist" thing, I just don`t get it. What I saw was a bunch of women who work hard to waste their own lives and ruin the lives of those near them. The key factor in Bernarda`s environment is gossip. Gossip is her only concern, and she locks away her daughters, nearly buries them alive, just so that women in town can`t find any flaw in their behaviour. Sorry to say, gals, but this all sounds quite mysoginistic to me. Isn`t all this gossiping and meanness a classic mysoginistic cliche?
I don`t quite like Lorca very much but this one I enjoyed. Very well written, the man manages to keep interest all along even though no much happens. I think the reader / watcher simply enjoys the trip into such a strange, alien society and mindset.
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Finished Reading
May 12, 2012 – Shelved

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María As a matter of fact, by portraying the mysoginistic and repressed society of his time, Lorca is denouncing patriarchy :) In short, Bernarda represents the most extreme patriarchal views, whereas Adela is just the opposite. (Spoilers ahead) One could interpret the end of the play as Adela's punishment (and any other women like her) for being rebel against patriarchy, but it also means that she'd rather be dead but free than live the life Bernarda (and society, specially in a rural environment) wanted her to.

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