Access

You are not currently logged in.

Access your personal account or get JSTOR access through your library or other institution:

login

Log in to your personal account or through your institution.

If You Use a Screen Reader

This content is available through Read Online (Free) program, which relies on page scans. Since scans are not currently available to screen readers, please contact JSTOR User Support for access. We'll provide a PDF copy for your screen reader.

"Doña Bárbara": Un Cuento de Hadas

André S. Michalski
PMLA
Vol. 85, No. 5 (Oct., 1970), pp. 1015-1022
DOI: 10.2307/1261542
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/1261542
Page Count: 8
  • Read Online (Free)
  • Download ($4.00)
  • Subscribe ($19.50)
  • Cite this Item
Since scans are not currently available to screen readers, please contact JSTOR User Support for access. We'll provide a PDF copy for your screen reader.
"Doña Bárbara": Un Cuento de Hadas
Preview not available

Abstract

Despite the often praised realism of Rómulo Gallegos' major novel, some of its episodes are not very plausible, due not so much to an overriding allegorical symbolism as to still another narrative plane that has generally been neglected by criticism, that of folk mythology. Doña Bárbara is a legendary character introduced in a ritual style reminiscent of fairy tales. The entire novel is a retelling of a fairy tale, with Doña Bárbara as the evil sorceress, Marisela as the Sleeping Beauty, and Luzardo as Prince Charming. Doña Bárbara is called the "devourer of men," an epithet that equates her with the flat grassland over which she reigns and identifies her as a type of nymph or siren who entices and destroys men. Inspired by both the European and American Indian legends, Gallegos endowed her with traits of European witches, as well as those typical of Indian shamans, especially "nagualism". Thus, events hard to believe on the psychological plane of the narrative, such as the swift change in the character of the protagonist, appear logical on the mythical level, which is as important to the understanding of the novel as those of psychological realism and allegory.

Page Thumbnails

  • Thumbnail: Page 
1015
    1015
  • Thumbnail: Page 
1016
    1016
  • Thumbnail: Page 
1017
    1017
  • Thumbnail: Page 
1018
    1018
  • Thumbnail: Page 
1019
    1019
  • Thumbnail: Page 
1020
    1020
  • Thumbnail: Page 
1021
    1021
  • Thumbnail: Page 
1022
    1022