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H ganse a un lado los Terry Gilliams del mundo, aqu hay alguien a n m s desquiciado C mo admiro a los escritores barrocos sobre todo, a los barrocos m s contempor neos No s de d nde sacan sus im genes, sus figuras, sus palabras.Un libro fant stico en por lo menos dos sentidos Fray Servando asiente, complacido. This is an imagined biography of the real Dominican Friar Servando Teresa de Mier 1765 1827 written in 1966 by the author of The Doorman It starts very much in the magical realism mode but does rather tend to lose steam tostandard Latin America novel near the end This is like many of Mario Llosa s e.g Feast of the Goat, The War of the End of the World, Way to Paradise or Souza s e.g Mad Maria work in that it is a brilliant narrative where you begin to wonder about the true facts rather than clever fiction The magical realism style, is a mixture of first and third person, is in deedlike a hallucination reflecting the inner and outer struggle of this real life revolutionary priest.It starts in Mexico with Sevando childhood and education in Monterrey then preaching in 1794 that the Virgin of Guadalupe who originally appeared 1541 actually visited New Spain as part of the indigenous religion many years earlier Arrested and exiled to a Spain, he was given the chance to plead his case but got lost on the way to a council meeting Rearrested and escaping so starts his remarkable journey from escapades in France where he meets Sim n Rodr guez, Sim n Bol var s former teacher Rome then Spain arrested for his Mexican Independence views escaped, recaptured escaped, released for converting Rabbis military priest in the Franco Spain war captured and escaped the French met General Blake witnesses the Battle of Trafalgar and moves to London writes Revolutionary newspaper travels to New Spain captured by the Royalists ends up in Havana and escapes to USA revisiting Mexico after independence is arrested by the Spanish released by the Mexicans but is then arrested for his anti federal views and yes escapes his seventh Dies Mummified body sold to circus in 1861 and exhibited in Brussels but is soon lost never to reappear.You can imagine what could be made of this history and this book does not disappoint.Some quotes There s just no way out It s as if I was realising the whole time how useless all this running away is All the time I keep telling myself do everything you can, do everything you can And I do But the trouble is you never know how much you can do And if everything were possible it might as well be impossible, simply because it can be done and nothing is gained by it Routine would be the only thing left, routine androutine Summer I ask God to grant me proof of His existence by letting me die But I doubt that He can hear me If God were here He would have gone mad Not for me, but Servando s memoirs, in translation, are available to read This, though not a perfect attempt, is another 5 star magical realism tale. In The Brilliant Tradition Of Don Quixote And Candide, This Passionate Novel By The Author Of Before Night Falls Is A Modern Masterpiece Of Latin American Fiction Fray Servando Priest, Blasphemer, Dueler Of Monsters, Irresistible Lover, Misunderstood Prophet, Prisoner, And Consummate Escape Artist Wanders Among The Vice Ridden Populations Of Eighteenth Century Europe And The Americas, Fleeing Dungeons, A Marriage Minded Woman, A Slave Ship Captain, And The Inquisition Whether By Burro, By Boat, Or By The Back Of A Whale, Fray Servando S Journey Is At Once Funny And Romantic, Melancholy And Profound A Tale Rooted In History, Yet Outrageously Hallucinatory An Impenitent Amalgam Of Truth And Invention, Historical Fact And Outrageous Make Believe A Philosophical Black Comedy The New York Times Un libro que le cuando ten a 14 o 15 a os y me marc mucho Fue la segunda novela de Arenas, donde reescribe las Memorias del fraile mexicano Fray Servando Teresa de Mier Noriega y Guerra, cuyas aventuras se transforman en el modo de vida de un hombre contestatario al R gimen del Imperio espa ol, que se dedica a transformar el sistema que lo aprisiona y que lo lleva a vivir 32 a os en diversas c rceles mexicanas, espa olas y cubanas Es un personaje que se ubica en un lugar perif rico y desde ah plantea una respuesta activa contra la ideolog a dominante.Casi como la vida misma del propio Arenas quien sufri persecuci n del r gimen castrista no solamente por su abierta homosexualidad, sino por su cr tica al Gobierno, que le cerr muchas puertas como escritor durante los a os de mayor ostracismo cultural y sectarismo en Cuba, donde s lo pudo publicar un libro, Celestino antes del alba, que se agot en una semana.La escritura de Arenas te revuelca y te abraza, y cuando te das cuenta est s rendida Para leerlo y releerlo. Risa, llanto, enojo, desconcierto, asombro, y un poco m s de lo mismo Esta novela es toda una aventura en relato y emociones Mares con tritones, barcos piratas, nav os de esclavos, c rceles donde las ratas bailan, y escaleras de cristal todo para narrar de una manera nica y sat rica la odisea de Fray Servando Teresa de Mier Una propuesta espectacular en el manejo del tiempo, narrador, recursos, estilo todo sin dejar de ser una novela salida de la imaginaci n e ingenio del gran Reinado Arenas, coloc ndolo en un lugar primordial como representante de la literatura latinoamericana del siglo XX Cinco estrellas al no poder darle seis Un nuevo favorito personal, sin duda. I rate this book a 3.8 on a scale of 1 to 5 with 5 being best This novel, banned in Cuba, was first published in Paris after being secreted out between the pages of a biological dissertation The book, and the author s difficult plight, are a testament to what Faulkner called the indestructible will to freedom The protagonist of El mundo alucinante, Servando, is based on the historical figure of Fray Servando Teresa de Mier 1763 1827 , a Dominican friar who spent much of his life in and out of prisons in Spain and its New World possessions In terms of stylistics, the novel s most notable quality is its verbal inventiveness Word play, punning and ridiculously absurd humor run rampant throughout the work. Este es un libro que verdaderamente le hace honor a su t tulo A Arenas le valen madres cualquier convenci n de coherencia narrativa, l crea su propio mundo De por s la vida de Fray Servando es bien surreal, y luego Arenas le da un toque personal muy interesante Aqu no existe realidad, todo es lenguaje y le queda excelente Si se puede superar la confusi n inicial que causa esta novela, se le disfruta much simo S vale la pena leerla. Un laberinto lleno de alucinaciones Desde la perspectiva de la literatura una lectura a veces complicada, a veces muy graciosa, barroca en la variedad de estilos de su narrativa.Desde la perspectiva historiogr fica Una magistral ficci n que adem s de su valor literario, pone sobre la mesa la discusi n sobre el caracter siempre inacabado, incompleto y parcial de la interpretaci n hist rica en el marco de una disciplina acad mica. Reinaldo Arenas 1943 1990 Reinaldo Arenas 1943 1990 nasceu numa rea rural de Cuba, mudando se em 1963 para Havana onde acaba por estudar filosofia e literatura na Faculdade de Letras, sem nunca ter conclu do a sua forma o acad mica Um ano mais tarde come a a trabalhar na Biblioteca Nacional Jos Mart e inicia a sua carreira liter ria com O Mundo Alucinante o seu primeiro romance publicado em 1966.Apoiante da Revolu o Cubana nos seus primeiros anos na capital Havana acaba por se tornar sua v tima, sendo perseguido, preso e torturado em virtude, essencialmente, pelo assumir da sua homossexualidade e por tentar provar que o governo de Fidel Castro n o tinha trazido democracia ilha Reinaldo Arenas passa grande parte da sua vida a combater o regime comunista e a pol tica de Fidel Castro, tentando in meras vezes, desde a d cada de 1970, abandonar Cuba continuando a ser sistematicamente v tima da censura e da repress o, e incont veis vezes preso e libertado.Em 1980 devido a uma autoriza o de sa da do governo cubano integrada no xodo de Mariel emigra o em massa de cubanos que partiram do Porto de Mariel para os Estados Unidos da Am rica entre 15 de Abril e 31 de Outubro de 1980 deixa Cuba e acaba por se instalar em Nova Iorque.Em 1987 Reinaldo Arenas diagnosticado com SIDA e em 1990 ap s ter conclu do a sua autobiografia, que seria publicada postumamente Antes Que Anoite a , suicida se com uma dose excessiva de lcool e drogas, deixando uma carta de despedida view spoiler CARTA DE DESPEDIDA Al morir Reinaldo Arenas dej varias copias de esta carta destinada a algunos de sus amigos Queridos amigos debido al estado precario de mi salud y a la terrible depresi n sentimental que siento al no poder seguir escribiendo y luchando por la libertad de Cuba, pongo fin a mi vida En los ltimos a os, aunque me sent a muy enfermo, he podido terminar mi obra literaria, en la cual he trabajado por casi treinta a os Les dejo pues como legado todos mis terrores, pero tambi n la esperanza de que pronto Cuba ser libre Me siento satisfecho con haber podido contribuir aunque modestamente al triunfo de esa libertad Pongo fin a mi vida voluntariamente porque no puedo seguir trabajando Ninguna de las personas que me rodean est n comprometidas en esta decisi n S lo hay un responsable Fidel Castro Los sufrimientos del exilio, las penas del destierro, la soledad y las enfermedades que haya podido contraer en el destierro seguramente no las hubiera sufrido de haber vivido libre en mi pa s.Al pueblo cubano tanto en el exilio como en la Isla los exhorto a que sigan luchando por la libertad Mi mensaje no es un mensaje de derrota, sino de lucha y esperanza.Cuba ser libre Yo ya lo soy.Firmado,Reinaldo ArenasPARA SER PUBLICADA hide spoiler This book was crazy.I embarked upon this read because an important lady in my life happened to have written her senior thesis on it and Alejo Carpentier s Explosion in a Cathedral The book follows the Peregrinations and ill fated they are indeed of a 17th century Mexican priest as he is hounded throughout the world following and inflammatory and, by some accounts, blasphemous speech The book reads like a series of hallucinations and very rarely makes a whole lot of sense But as I learned from reading an excellently though out and written thesis, this was intentional In a reaction to Carpentier s very grand and historical style, Arenas treats history as uncertain and the accounts of it merely one possibility This revelation did make sense however, it did not make the book any easier to read.Fray Servando is, for the most part, a very sympathetic character, and I found myself curious as to what strange misfortune would befall him next I never was quite sure if that misfortune did ever befall him though, since often the next chapter was written in the second person telling either me or Servando that what had just transpired had not just transpired.As confusing and meandering and I ll say it seemingly nonsensical this book was, I did find myself enjoying it Maybe that s just how much I dig this girl who had me read it, or maybe it s actually interesting to read such a strangely and unorthodoxly written book.