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Falconry and its Significance in Chronicles of a Death Foretold

Chronicles of a Death
by

Emaad Siddiqui

on 4 December 2012

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Transcript of Falconry and its Significance in Chronicles of a Death Foretold

A project by Emaad Siddiqui Falconry Falconry: References Greater connections: Beloved Epigraph to novel: "The pursuit of love is like falconry". This line is the reason why I chose to do my project on falcons, because I was interested in understanding why Marquez opens this novel with a line about love.

Santiago carries his "falconry equipment" (5) during hunting season and Santiago and his father demonstrate falconry at parties (8) Since Santiago carries falconry equipment, Marquez suggests a similarity between falcons and Santiago.

While the narrator talks about his love affair with Maria Alejandrina Cervantes (the prostitute), he talks about how Santiago develops a secretive emotional connection with her, despite the narrator's advice about pursuing relationships with strong women: "A falcon who chases a warlike crane can only hope for a life of pain" (65) Not only does this reaffirm the relation between Santiago and falcons, but also introduces the concept of "warlike cranes" or strong women that use their power (from beauty, sex etc.) to control men The falcon symbolizes sinful and greedy thoughts. However a tamed falcon, which are used in falconry, often refers to the "Christian convert", who has turned these sinful thoughts into positive aspirations and truths. Santiago exhibits both characteristics; although he is very truthful and is described as well-spirited (6), he does try to rape Divina and is obsessed with money.

In Egyptian folklore, one of the gods Ra has a head of a falcon; therefore, the falcon is a figure of god or authority. In context with Chronicles, the men (the falcons) are the authority figures that try to exert their power over women. However, they must be careful of the "warlike cranes" (65).

The sport of falconry itself originated in Europe as was mainly used by the aristocrats. Falconry therefore represents nobility, but also keenness and swiftness. The two main pursuers of love, Santiago and Bayardo, are both upper class men that do have these characteristics. Falconry is also very popular in Arabic regions



Origins of the symbolism of the falcon The first "falcon" of this novel is Santiago Nasar. In the novel he pursues three women. He tries to rape Divina Flor, the daughter of his maid. He is engaged to Flora Miguel, yet she ultimately rejects him after learning about the rumors of the killing. He also developes an emotional connection with the escort, Maria Alejadrina Cervantes.

Each one of these relationships fails in some way. These failures represents the fallacies of the society's views about the love between a man and a woman; they believe its not about genuine consent, but rather the men chasing after the vulnerable women, similar to falcons chasing the vulnerable rats. Santiago Nasar:
the fledgling falcon Paul D pursues a relationship with Sethe to
help himself settle and come to terms with his past. Like Santiago, Paul D pursues a relationship only because he believes he needs one, not out a genuine love for the partner.

Sethe herself was the only baby that Sethe's mother kept because her father was the only black man of all the "fathers". Sethe's mother saw only her relationship with the black man as something true/right, so she kept the legacy of that relationship; Sethe..

Halle is stunned by the rape of his wife Sethe by the white boys, and completely loses his sanity as demonstrated by the butter on blank face. Like Bayardo, he feels emasculated knowing his partner has been "deflowered". This type of thinking is ultimately foolish and represents the lack of true love between Halle and Sethe.
Gabriel's Inspiration: Gil Vicente Gil Vicente was a Portuguese playwright who is considered the father of Portuguese drama. He worked under the royal courts of Manuel 1 and John III. He depicted court drama, including the ceremonies of courtship. He worked in a very dynamic time period between the Middle Ages and the Renaissance, and many of his plays were commentaries on the social change he saw both in and out of the courts. The Original Lines by Vicente The two main quotes about falconry and love that Marquez used were actually taken from some of Vicente's plays, demonstrating the similar styles and points of views the two writers shared. Here are the quotes in the original languages.

"La caza de amor es de altaneria" (the pursuit of love is like falconry). It is interesting that Vicente uses "altaneria", because besides falconry, it can also mean hubris or haughtiness, suggesting that these falcons who pursue love exhibit this hubris.

"Halcon que se atreve de con garza guerrera peligros esperas" (Danger awaits the falcon who chases the warlike crane). This line only is more direct in its declaration that "Danger awaits" the falcons who chase these strong women.
[Bel Villada] Flora Miguel: Of Image Maria: Of Gender Roles Divina Flor: Of Tradition Divina Flor is the daughter of Victoria Guzman, the house maid. She is constantly confronted by Santiago for sex, but with the help of her mother she manages to defend herself. At the end, she has an apparition that Santiago has entered the house, but in reality he never did.

Victoria Guzman was also raped by Santiago Nasar's father Ibrahim. Santiago feels that it is tradition for him to also pursue women like his father, and believes that society allows him to do so. However, Victoria Guzman is strong and does not want her daughter to have that same experience, so she calls Santiago out on his advances by calling him an animal.

We see the first of Marquez's commentary on love in society; that it is often a product of tradition. Tradition has allowed men like Santiago believe that they are able to essentially become womanizers. Marquez believes this is a dangerous mentality that only serves to bring the society down by hurting both the women and the men, as Divina ultimately gets the last laugh as she thinks Santiago has entered the house, because of her desire to get rid of him. The relationship between Flora and Santiago is very secretive; there are only a few references to their marriage. Instead, Santiago is more preoccupied with the grandeur of the ceremony, not about Flora herself.

This is another commentary by Marquez; that often in the society we lose the true meaning of what a marriage is; a bond between two lovers. Similar to Bayardo's wedding, it is mainly for the image, not for the actual relationship. This comes back to bite Santiago as he ultimately gets rejected by Flora for the same reason; Flora is more concerned about the dishonor Santiago will bring being accused of raping Angela, and therefore closes her door to Santiago, leading him to his death as he is forced to leave the place of refuge. Maria is the escort that uses her beauty and sex to get ahead in life. She runs a brothel that many men go to in their spare time. She is a powerful women that can charm and control other men; even the narrator recognizes her strength by calling her a "warlike crane" (65). Santiago, although warned by both the narrator and his father about such a relationship, has one anyways, and surprisingly Maria has respect for Santiago.

With Maria, Marquez talks about how gender roles affects love in our society. Men like the narrator and Ibrahim Nasar want the women to be submissive; authority is reserved for the men. That is why they warn Nasar to avoid her, because she will not be subordinate to men's orders. However, Santiago acts on his emotions and maintains a relationship with her; Maria respects this because she does not believe that she should be submissive. She likes having men who are not afraid of having a strong partner. Marquez believes that relationships based on gender roles are ultimately flawed as they do not represent genuine love.

Bayarado San Roman; The Falcon that learns water level Bayardo San Roman is a rich man who is looking for a spouse. He knows that as a man in his society, he needs to have a beautiful woman at his side to gain respect. Therefore, when he sees Angela, he immediately uses all his power and money to make their lives perfect. Angela, however, is not interested in Bayardo, but she knows that she has to if she is to keep the honor of her family. Although the marriage is broken off, after many years they return together after Angela sends Bayardo thousands of letters, letters that he did not even open. Bayardo Finds Success
without Falconry The story of Bayardo and Angela represents what Marquez believes should be the true meaning of love. Initially, their relationship was based on wealth, image, and honor. Bayardo, however, rejects Angela at the end because he believes that Angela is impure, based on societal values. Angela also is somewhat powerful in her own way; she refuses to wait for Bayardo and does not wear her wedding dress until he arrives.

The unopened letters that Angela sends to Bayardo represent what Marquez wants in marriage; a genuine sense of mutual faith/trust. Bayardo does not even need the letters from Angela to realize the love that they share together, and Angela herself takes pleasure in writing to him, even if he does not respond.

Only when Bayardo stops chasing women like falcons does he find true love, and ultimately true happiness. Explanation of Video Choice The video is to simply set the mood for the presentation by introducing the sport of falconry. I believe this video is excellent because it demonstrates the way these falcons hunt their pray mercilessly. The video also shows the falcon eating the guts of a rabbit, which is a fitting image for this novel. Although the man does go on a small tangent about animal rights, he brings it home well with the comment about life and death. Bibliography Bell-Villada, Gene H. García Márquez: The Man and His Work. Chapel Hill: University of North Carolina, 1990. Print.

"Falcon." Symbolism Wiki. Wikia Entertainment, n.d. Web. <http://symbolism.wikia.com/wiki/Falcon>. (Bell Villada)
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