magic realism

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magic realism,

primarily Latin American literary movement that arose in the 1960s. The term has been attributed to the Cuban writer Alejo CarpentierCarpentier, Alejo
, 1904–80, Cuban novelist and musicologist. As a political exile in Paris between 1928 and 1939, Carpentier was strongly influenced by Antonin Artaud, Jacques Prévert, and the surrealists.
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, who first applied it to Latin-American fiction in 1949. Works of magic realism mingle realistic portrayals of ordinary events and characters with elements of fantasy and myth, creating a rich, frequently disquieting world that is at once familiar and dreamlike. The movement's best-known proponent is the Colombian novelist Gabriel García MárquezGarcía Márquez, Gabriel
, 1927–2014, Colombian novelist, short-story writer, and journalist, b. Aracataca. Widely considered one of the great Latin American masters of narrative and one of the finest literary stylists of the 20th cent.
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, who has used the technique many times, most famously in his novel One Hundred Years of Solitude (1967). Other magic realist writers include Guatemala's Miguel Ángel AsturiasAsturias, Miguel Ángel
, 1899–1974, Guatemalan novelist, poet, and diplomat. Living in Paris in the 1920s, Asturias was influenced by Romain Rolland, Valéry, and the surrealists.
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, Argentina's Julio CortázarCortázar, Julio
, 1914–84, Argentine novelist, poet, essayist, and short-story writer, b. Brussels. Moving permanently to France in 1951, Cortázar gradually gained recognition as one of the century's major experimental writers.
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, and Mexico's Carlos FuentesFuentes, Carlos
, 1928–2012, Mexican writer, editor, and diplomat. He was head of the department of cultural relations in Mexico's ministry of foreign affairs (1956–59) and Mexican ambassador to France (1975–77).
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. Non-Latin American writers whose fiction often employs magic realism include Italo CalvinoCalvino, Italo
, 1923–85, Italian novelist. Calvino was one of the most popular novelists of the 20th cent. Although loneliness is an essential condition in his writings, he imbues his stories with passion and celebrates the human capacity for love and imagination.
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 and Salman RushdieRushdie, Sir Salman
, 1947–, British novelist, b. Bombay (now Mumbai, India). He is known for the allusive richness of his language and the wide variety of Eastern and Western characters and cultures he explores.
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References in periodicals archive ?
Invitation's engagement with magic explicitly relates to another of the tropes that Faris identifies: that magical realist texts are "fresh, childlike, even primitive .
Films have been considered in magic realist terms by few critics such as Fredric Jameson (1986), Maggie Ann Bowers (2004), Frederick Luis Aldama (2003) or Robert Stam (2005) but for the most part many magical realist films have not been analyzed from this point of view, besides some adaptations from recognized magical realist novels, such as Como agua para chocolate (Alfonso Arau, 1992) or The House of the Spirits (Bille August, 1993).
Simal is in charge of Chapter 5, "From Identity to Alter-entity: Trans-selving the Self in Magical Realist Narrative", an essay that offers an illuminating comparison between the different conceptions of self and identity that appear in magical realist texts and some of the most striking notions defended by Emmanuel Levinas, one of the most controversial philosophers in recent years, especially since the Turn to Ethics.
Though as a writer Marele Day is known neither for her attention to religion or spirituality nor for the artistic experimentation associated with magical realism, I argue that in Lambs of God she combines the two to create an unusual synthesis that effectively offers its readers a Christian comedy created in large part through magical realist literary devices.
In the spring of 2009, when I was floundering at learning Spanish while teaching a course in magical realism with my university's study abroad program in Montevideo, Uruguay, a colleague sent me The Cuban Swimmer, a bilingual play with magical realist elements by Hispanic playwright Milcha Sanchez-Scott.
However, it was only Marquez's magical realist masterpiece, which he wrote in 1967, and was translated into English in 1970, that was identified by more than one author.
The doubters almost convince him, but then this small South American republic--nearly 90 per cent rainforest--pulls on him like a magical realist text.
This episode is characteristic of the entire novel in its homage to writers as different as the magical realist Gabriel Garcia Marquez, whose One Hundred Years of Solitude is referenced early on in the episode, and the German novelist W.
Of all these characteristics, the irreducible element of magic (as opposed to empirically based knowledge of events) figures more prominently in Faris's deliberations of whether a text can be considered magical realist or not.
Gilbert's stories, set in the fictional Central American village of Palomar, are known for their magical realist bent and this second volume has the arrival of a serial killer in Palomar and the village's response to modernity, hotels and phone lines.
Gaylard suggests that, using techniques of identification, defamiliarisation and extrapolation, African magical realist authors enable readers to think more clearly and empathise more deeply through their imaginative entry into "sceptical heterotopias" (317).
Gabriella Belli sees two tendencies in Italian art at work during this time, the frenetic Dionysian impulse that animated futurism, and the calmer, more reflective Apollonian of the metaphysical, magical realist and novecento movements that quickly succeeded the futurists in a return to the traditional classical sources of Italian art.