El pobre Goriot (Clásica) (Spanish Edition)
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He captures the Zeitgeist of his age and sets the stage as it were for dozens of similar plays that attempt to reveal, discuss, criticize and instruct their audiences on one of the central issues of the Spanish nineteenth century.
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The s witnessed some rapid changes: in , the creation of the Banco de Isabel II allowed for competition with the Banco de San Fernando, but by that initiative was declared a failure and the two entities fused. GIES Unsurprisingly, then, numerous plays appeared between and that integrated this instability and anxiety into their plot-lines. Inserted into a traditional does-she-love-me? Madrid: Vicente de Lalama, As in other plays where gambling is a subtheme, it is believed here that marriage to a good woman will cure Arturo of this newly acquired vice.
Once again, a play opens with the reading of a will, this one by yet another enriched indiano, don Severo, and the expectations of immense inherited wealth some 20,, reales. The characters specify the details of their expenditures and incomes 40, reales here, 1, reales for rent there [even further explained as 16 reales per diem], 30 duros to pay for a wet-nurse, etc.
When the Stock Market, as an extension of the gambling trope, is inserted into the dialogue, more complications ensue. Afortunadamente, los rumores de quiebra que corrieron anoche, son infundados. GIES y ambos hacemos negocios de un resultado tal cual. And hence, Mauricio convinces Perico to put in the ducados he had inherited from a deceased uncle. The details accumulate in rapid succession, and they all want in on the act.
It generated controversy from the beginning, and became a major source of speculation for the next several years; it was inaugurated on 24 June Y serlo fue mi destino. Luisa is obsessed with money because she is obsessed with keeping up with the Joneses, in this case, with Julia, the hyper-snooty neighbour who represents the coarse brutality of money, a commodity she believes not only buys taste, but then imposes that taste on everyone else.
A seemingly innocuous joke becomes, perhaps, a metaphor for the crisis, as Larra sees it. In the case of the fictional characters of El Conde Lucanor, the needs are more varied and pressing, but similar principles apply. X, 50 The young man in Ex. XXXV does not have sufficient wealth to fulfil his responsibilities , and his decision to marry in order to escape poverty is to be applauded.
Those who become poor are extremely vulnerable Ex. XLV , and it is normal human behaviour to wish to escape poverty Ex. And in his concluding remarks to Ex. XXV he makes it clear that a good man will increase his wealth to the benefit of his family, his vassals and society at large, and refers to examples of people who were not as successful as they should have been, and who, as a consequence, lost their wealth, to the detriment of all who depended on them A repeated theme of his works is the importance of giving, and of giving in the right spirit, to the point where the amount given represents a genuine sacrifice: JUAN MANUEL AND MONEY 47 Otrosi, el que da limosna tal que non siente menos lo que da, yo non digo que tal limosna sea mal, mas digo que seria mejor si diese tanto por amor de Dios fasta que sintiese alguna mengua.
Libro de los estados, Part I, Ch. LX, Similar statements occur in the Libro enfenido e. XL, We can see the connections between his works and his actions both in the donations he made e. Much of what he has to say about financial transactions appears to be based on the experience of one who has given much thought to the matter, as can be seen in story XXXVI of El Conde Lucanor. The merchant at the centre of the story understands the concept of value for money, and remembers for twenty years the piece of advice which he purchased for the considerable price of one dobla, precisely because it was expensive; remembering and acting on that advice twenty years later prevents him killing his loyal wife and only son, and therefore proves to be an excellent investment, saving him from execution for murder, and eternal damnation.
Despite the essential nature of money and its potential for good, however, more often than not, and especially in the fictional world of Part I of El Conde Lucanor, it is misused as a force for evil. El Conde Lucanor, Part V, Such behaviour, strongly criticized here in general terms, is exemplified in Part I through characters such as the lonbardo of Ex. XIIII, 64—6.
Part II, Ch. XXXVIII, In his advice to his son he re-affirms the importance of acquiring money honourably Libro enfenido, , going on to define tesoro as consisting of aver monedado, pannos, oro and plata The archetypical example of wealth earned dishonourably is the treynta dineros de oro for which Judas sold Christ ibid. Libro enfenido, He goes on to explain in some detail that the monies collected from fines are tainted by the criminal act from which they arise, and must therefore be used for the common good —6.
LXXVI, —9 Wrongful acquisition of money is not the only problem, however; there are still dangers in how wealth is used, and even if it is given away, the spirit in which it is given is crucial. Human nature makes it difficult for man not to love wealth for its own sake: Dixo una ves el dicho omne sancto que mas se deleytaua el quando traya la mano a la su gata por el lomo, que sant Gregorio, que era papa, en todas sus riquezas.
LV, The rich and the powerful have constantly to examine their motives when spending their money. XLI of El Conde Lucanor, responded to criticisms that his achievements had been trivial by providing the means to complete the construction of the Great Mosque in the city; this is held up by Patronio as a model of behaviour for the count, who has been similarly ridiculed for his negligible achievements.
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But as can be seen in Ex. XL, the intention behind such actions is always crucial: the good works promised by the Seneschal of Carcassone were futile, because they were driven by selfish motives. The dangers inherent in acquiring money, enjoying the pleasures it can bring, and even in doing good works for the wrong reasons, are a recurrent concern of Juan Manuel as he attempts to provide a coherent code of conduct from the perspective of the rich and powerful. Hizo fuga el embustero, y abierto el caxon delante del Sr. XX , and the employment by General Franco and his coconspirators of a Hindu alchemist, who produced no gold and fled under suspicion of being a British agent Preston XX is given a large sum of money in order to undertake a journey, without revealing his true intentions; the bridegroom of Ex.
XXV does exactly the same, but because his character has been properly assessed in advance, he handsomely repays the trust placed in him. The differences between Juan Ruiz and Juan Manuel on the subject of money are quite marked: the cleric uses traditional material to satirize the power of money, whereas the aristocratic layman accepts the presence of money in human society and seeks to establish rules on how to prevent it being disruptive.
In this, for once, they conform with the expectations we might have of the clerical and the secular writer, whereas in many other respects they do not; for example, the Libro de buen amor extols the delights of sexual love, whereas Juan Manuel is reticent on such matters. In stanzas — of the Libro de buen amor Juan Ruiz presents a vehement criticism of the power of money, and in the remainder of the work there is little to support a more positive view.
Juan Manuel, too, is aware of the power of money and of its dangers, but he accepts it as a social reality, as a necessity with the potential for good, provided it is acquired for the right motives and used in the correct way. He treats the subject with due seriousness and accommodates it into his demanding but clear conditions for living a life successful both on this earth and as preparation for the next. He recommends caution, and his views were largely shaped by traditional analyses of social and economic structures which were in the process of disappearing, but he did make strenuous efforts to incorporate money into the models of behaviour that he describes.
For Juan Manuel both money and the lack of money were serious matters; poverty for a character in the Libro de buen amor might represent no more than an obstacle in the seduction of women e. Diario Pinciano. Your Money or Your Life. Economy and Religion in the Middle Ages, trans. Ian Macpherson London: Tamesis , pp. For a good discussion see Enrique Miralles Introduction to his edition of La desheredada, ix—xxv.
There are several important aspects to this relationship. I use the form Felipe throughout this essay. By this time he was again more concerned to provide a symbolic setting than a realistic one. Time as well as space is accorded a more concrete role, for the temporal vagueness of the early novels is replaced by a firm chronology of action, encompassing in the process external events set in time, that is to say history, as it has evolved or is evolving.
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Apart from a description of a bullfight Part II, Ch. The timing too is unspecific; the action presumably takes place over three to four years in the late s or early s, but there is no trace of the momentous political events that occur during these years. The socio-political environment is thus quite different from that of the novels following La desheredada.
A second aspect linking Marianela and El doctor Centeno, and one that has escaped critical attention, concerns chronology. The later novel dates the appearance of Felipe Centeno at the Observatory in the southern industrial development of Madrid at precisely 10 February Cienfuegos has a copy of the newspaper in his hand , and the narrator emphasizes that it is a February issue. It is a plausible chronology constructed with obvious care to account for the seventeen weeks since Felipe left his home.
The existence of a preliminary draft might even provide an explanation as to why a younger member of the Miquis family, Augusto, should appear as a mature adult in La desheredada before his elder brother Alejandro has lived and died in —64 in a novel apparently written later. The contrast between the two brothers, the pragmatic Augusto and the imaginative Alejandro, in his way as unrealistic as Isidora, is one of several striking presentations of the conflict between fantasy and pragmatism.
This might account for a certain discrepancy of tone between the last paragraphs of Marianela and the somewhat burlesque approach displayed in El doctor Centeno. At all events, by the early s, Felipe is more mature, perhaps around twenty years old. It is highly significant, moreover, that the date proceeding from Marianela determines the chronology of the two novels that immediately follow, Tormento —68 and La de Bringas , since the three novels together form a loose trilogy.
This last occurrence is fully integrated into the fictional action. These events are followed, in Tormento, by the continuous growth of political tension as the revolution approaches. Her attractive human qualities, shown in her spontaneous song and dance, her primitive rejoicing in nature, her simple religious notions and her generosity, remain undeveloped and unfulfilled.
When the one function, acting as a guide to the blind Pablo, that gives meaning to her life and opens out the remote possibility, in which she scarcely believes, of his loving her, is taken from her, nothing is left. The thirteen-year-old boy is deeply conditioned by the mining industry. The presence of the mines is felt from the very beginning of the novel; they are grandiose, awesome and menacing: a giant distortion of human features that is at once a sign of inexorable progress and a monster that needs to be curbed.
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Without being the most downtrodden of the community, the Centeno family clearly demonstrates the degradation of values produced by the mines. In the Centeno household where Marianela, nominally taken in as a work of charity, is deprived of every kindness and is rated in consideration below the household pets, the cat and the thrush, Felipe, alone among his siblings, is desperate to escape.
This aspiration is insolubly linked to education. Significantly, the image of stone, with its absolute rigidity, is related with blindness, which shuts out visual experience just as completely. Contrasting with the images of stone and blindness are images from the natural world of beauty and imagination stars, flowers associated with Marianela, but the figure that stands out is of flight.
Birds represent freedom, ambition, the potentiality to rise above the oppressive circumstances of earth-bound life. While Pablo and Florentina are airborne, there is no further prospect of flying for Marianela.
The stories of Felipe and Marianela are closely intertwined. El doctor Centeno will work out what sort of man he turns out to be. It is a counsel that will resonate right up to El doctor Centeno. In the novel to which his name is given Felipe continues, as Peter Bly notes , to be associated with a minute insect. Now, however, his prospects of success are immediately put in doubt. Pedro Polo is a capricious autocrat, and his female relations, his mother Claudia and his sister Marcelina, are over-demanding. Felipe, for his part, has a long way to go. He is successful in learning to read, and reaches out towards geography, but his desire to learn practical subjects is unfulfilled.
As it is, he takes refuge in his friendship with the picaresque Juanito del Socorro and in wandering the streets and playing at bullfights.