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message 1: by Anda (new)

Anda | 34 comments One hundred years… form the title is an undoubted hint to the theme of time. How time flows in the book? How it alternates and how it stagnates? How connects time and characters in this book? Let’s talk about it!


message 2: by Serena (new)

Serena Huang (marrykatebush) | 259 comments The Buendía family, through each generation, is the clock of the book. It does not go forward from point A to B faithfully, matter of fact, the book starts after Macondo's founded and mentions right away how Colonel Aureliano Buendía will face the firing squad years later.

For me, Úrsula strings the readers through the complicatedness of time in this book.


message 3: by Anda (new)

Anda | 34 comments Hi Serena, sorry for the late reply, but we have fetched home last week a samoyed puppy (Zeno) and he now occupies all our time! When he finally fells in sleep, I manage to read few more pages from the book. Speaking about time, I find amazing Marquez’s ability to play with it. He knows how to compress it or dilate it, to swirl it. He makes from just only one moment an eternity (the daguerotype is quite a motif here – it catches not only the infinity of time, but also God, the infinity of knowledge), and reduces ages to few seconds (see how Ursula is surprised seeing her children grown up). The death is not really infinite, or rather definitive (see Melchiade or Prudencio Aquilar who keep showing themselves dead or alive), and sometimes the life could never end (Francisco – The Man who has 200 years, and is the only one who remembers things). I can say that the course of the story, the narration flow is given by the time. The book, the way in which is constructed is like an equation, where the place is fixed and sure (Macondo), and the time un-linearly flows. It’s actually what you said: the time is the clock of the book…and even more.


message 4: by Satia (new)

Satia Serena and Anda,

I'm chiming in late as well, mostly because I read this novel a while ago and my memory if both vague and vivid where this novel is concerned. There are things I remember vividly but they all feel dreamlike, more evocative than substantial. This is one of the many things I love about this novel.

Serena, what you say about Ursula is so true. She does seem to be that capstone that holds the narrative arch in place and if you can follow her throughout the rest of the novel's progression then it all holds together no matter how seemingly confusing it seems. You just have to let go and trust the ride.


Obviously, this novel couldn't have been written before the modern movement and one wonders how it fits in the post-modern movement. Frankly, and after reading Anda's reply I'm even more inclined to suggest that, this novel seems to transcend so much of what academia tries to do in labeling literary movements. If it can fit anywhere, it must fit between or ahead of what's coming. Perhaps it can't be labeled because the rest of literature is still trying to catch up.


message 5: by Serena (new)

Serena Huang (marrykatebush) | 259 comments Anda, congratulation on the new puppy! Lol! A samoyed puppy must be the most adorable thing ever! A tiny fluff of snowball... And yes, I totally understand how he must eats up all of your time-I got a pit bull mix puppy in the middle of the summer and till today, I spend 99% of my free time teaching and entertaining him. Lol! It's a lot of work!

I agree with you on Marquez's ability to play with time. One hundred years, 7 generations, and 3-4 names that keep repeating themselves, and yet, each character is unique and distinct.

Speaking of Ursula, reading this book again, I noticed Marquez's appreciation of the female sex and the awe for the role of motherhood. Ursula is a tiny woman with very strong determination, with mysterious yet natural instinct of sustaining life and justice. I love how she just went and whip Arcadio when he became the tyrannical ruler of Macondo, how she doesn't bow down to the fame and power of her son Colonel Aureliano Buendia when he is going to execute his best friend. While the men run around in frenzy of searching for knowledge or solitude, Ursula, Santa Sofia de la Piedad, and even the child-bride, Remedios Moscote, were the calm, solid foundation of the Buendia household that keep the house on the ground, keep it from being torn apart by ants, wild life, and the harsh weather.

Women being the makers and sustainers of life, but also as the destroyers of life-Fernanda del Carpio. She boards up the windows and locks the doors, isolating the family from the outside world, cutting the flow of life. How I dislike her!


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