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One Hundred Years of Solitude
One Hundred Years of Solitude
by Gabriel García Márquez (trans. Gregory Rabassa)

One Hundred Years of Solitude Themes

Little Words, Big Ideas

Memory and the Past

One Hundred Years of Solitude is a meditation on the history of an independent Colombia, merging several hundred years of events into an allegorical description of the evolution of Macondo. Pretty...

The Supernatural

Because One Hundred Years of Solitude is a magical realist novel, the supernatural is a strong and ever-present element in its plotting and character development. It's a force like the weather, or...

Family

Family is a virtual prison in One Hundred Years of Solitude. Inherited family characteristics are inescapable. Family life lacks privacy or freedom. And family fate is shared by all relatives regar...

Sex

In One Hundred Years of Solitude, sex is shown to be an overwhelming, usually irresistible desire. However inappropriate the object of sexual desire might be (say, your sister or aunt), the drive t...

Warfare

One Hundred Years of Solitude uses the real-life civil wars that plagued Colombia for decades as the basis for Colonel Aureliano Buendía's rebellion. It also uses the historically factual massacre...

Fate and Free Will

Novels can sometimes overwhelm readers with a steady and growing awareness that what we see on the page is only there because of the whims of the author, who could easily have made other choices. O...

Wisdom and Knowledge

Much like memory, wisdom and knowledge are shown to be cyclically lost and regained in the One Hundred Years of Solitude. Each successive generation needs to be educated, which requires adults who...

Perseverance

No Buendía in One Hundred Years of Solitude lacks for energy, and almost none is lazy. One of the novel's overarching themes is the way human activity can be the engine for development, progress,...

Love

There are very few examples of real, unselfish, requited love in One Hundred Years of Solitude that are not met with the almost instantaneous destruction of the lovers. Although in principle the no...

Death

One Hundred Years of Solitude's version of mortality varies depending on who is dying and who is left behind to mourn. Early on, the dead are an important part of the lives of the living: haunting...

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