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The House of the Spirits
The House of the Spirits
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The House of the Spirits Analysis
Literary Devices in The House of the Spirits
Symbolism, Imagery, Allegory
One day Pedro Tercero takes his girlfriend to visit his granddad (Old Pedro García) and Gramps tells them a story. It goes a little something like this: every night, a mean old fox would sneak...
To understand the setting of The House of the Spirits, it helps to think about the novel on two levels – a micro level and a macro level. On the micro level, it's the story of a wealthy famil...
Narrator Point of View
So, you're reading along, and everything's pretty straightforward. The narrator's telling us the story of the del Valle family like she's a psychic fly on the wall – she's uninvolved, but she...
While The House of the Spirits definitely qualifies as a family drama and a work of historical fiction (see the section of "Setting" for more about the history that informs the book), it's also one...
The author's tone is often playful and sympathetic, especially during the beginning parts of the novel. The follies and failures of the characters are told with lightheartedness and a certain unwav...
Allende's style in The House of the Spirits is, for the most part, very flowy and organic, as if she were telling the story orally. Reading the text, we feel as though we're listening to a gifted a...
What's Up With the Title?
The title brings up all sorts of associations for us – first of all, this novel is about a family, and the story of that family revolves around a house. It's "the big house on the corner," an...
What's Up With the Epigraph?
How much does a man live, after all?Does he live a thousand days, or one only?For a week, or for several centuries?How long does a man spend dying?What does it mean to say "for ever"?PABLO NERUDATh...
What's Up With the Ending?
The ending of The House of the Spirits leaves us feeling all warm and fuzzy inside. After bawling over Chapter 14 for seventeen pages, it's such a relief to know that Alba makes it home to her gran...
While this novel contains some vocabulary that might be unfamiliar to you – words like hacienda and patrón that come from Spanish – for the most part the language is pretty easy to...
Conservative Party in powerFor the first ten or eleven chapters of the novel, the Conservative Party is the only show in town. Esteban Trueba, a member of the landowning class, makes his fortune wh...
Booker's Seven Basic Plots Analysis: Rebirth
While The House of the Spirits contains some tragic elements – like an ambitious hero who messes things up for himself, a creepy "shadow figure" who pops up every once in a while – the...
Three Act Plot Analysis
This is a pretty long act. It covers Clara's childhood at the beginning of the novel to the military coup, when those who supported the Socialist Party have to go into hiding or, like Alba, help ot...
Allende began writing this novel in the form of a letter to her dying grandfather on January 8, 1981. It became such a success that she considers January 8th to be a lucky day, and now begins all o...
This book definitely contains a lot of sex. All kinds of sex. There's married sex, teenage sex, prostitution of the gay and straight varieties, true love sex, group sex, and even sex with a dead bo...
Saint Sebastián (1.1)Jesuit, Society of Jesus (1.9, 4.99) The Virgin Mary (1.18, 5.3)Jesus of Nazareth, Jesus Christ (1.19, 5.45, 5.102)San Antonio/ Saint Anthony (1.21, 3.1)Our Fathers and Ha...
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