La memoria historica en Cinco horas con Mario (1966) de Miguel Delibes y Si te dicen que cai (1973) de Juan Marse
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How can our generation truly understand what the Spanish society experienced during and after the Spanish Civil War? And most importantly, why should we care? The importance of understanding the experiences of the past is for one to learn from them so that history is not repeated but re-written. In order to learn and understand what one has never experienced, past generations leave behind their own memories, thoughts and adventures in the form of a novel, book or journal. Literature, for centuries, has helped present-day generations have a gimps of the past without physically being present because words have the power to transport an individual to a different era and location. Within my pages, you will find a journey paved by Juan Marsé and Miguel Delibes into the post-Civil War.
I will analyze, how Cinco horas con Mario by Miguel Delibes and Sí te dicen que caí by Juan Marsé form a image of what was lived after the war. Cinco horas con Mario is a novel that pertains to the movement 'La Generación del 36' which was one of the first movements develop after the war. The novel presence a generation’s viewpoint of the post-civil war period. The novels from this movement were published after the war but written during the war. The generation begins to grow frustrated with the Spanish society especially those who prefer a traditional stance rather than a modern one. Their purpose is to initiate the questioning of society in order to motivate the citizens to question their human actions, believes, and goverment. Cinco horas con Mario illustrates the frustration of the traditional believes and modern believes with protagonists such as Mario and Carmen, who never seem to find a medium ground. The entire novel gives the reader a deeper understanding of why those who have traditional believes hold on to their ideologies while expecting change from the modern thinkers.
In Si te dicen que caí, Juan Marsé presents the other side of the conflict. In a made up story by children, the author incorporates collective groups of modern thinkers who try to live in a country where only one point of view and one mind set is accepted. The novel is a picture of the Spanish society, of methods the government used to impose terror, of poverty, and of fear surrounded by violence and death. The novel itself is a collection of memoires that Sarnita narrates, describing raw and unpleasant experiences like the bombing in Barcelona, the murders in the streets, as well as life in poverty and submission. With each narration, the reader can experience the struggle to survive form both the modern thinkers and traditional thinkers through characters like Señorito Cornado, Java, Ramona, Marcos, Carmen and Mario.
In conclusion the authors of both novels, Cinco horas con Mario and Sí te dicen que caí, use their memories of the post-civil war to give the reader an understanding of the divisions in their society that caused Spain to be known as the “Two Spains.” Delibes helps us understand the world of the adults with Carmen and Mario. Marsé extends the concept of the two Spains by including a broader range of ideas, represented by Java, Aurora, Palau in contrast to el Tuerto, el Señorito Cornado, but above all he shows the reader the live of the children. At the end, both novels illustrate a mix of ideas that explain so much conflict and that are lived through every character. Together, the novels describe the cruel reality of living in Spain after the civil war.