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  • Dona Barbara

    1 posts, 1 voices, 533 views, started Dec 26, 2008

    Posted on Friday, December 26, 2008


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      Doña Bárbara is a novel by Venezuelan author Rómulo Gallegos, first published in 1929. This regionalist novel deals with the confrontation between civilization and the barbaric aspects of the rural environment and its inhabitants. It is written in the third person and mixes vernacular language and regionalisms with literary narrative, making the main conflict more obvious and at the same time more tangible.

      This novel is considered a masterpiece of Venezuelan literature and a classic in Latin American literature. It establishes a psychological study of the people of the Venezuelan plains:[1] victims of unfortunate situations, but at the same time strong and courageous.

      In the 1920s, Venezuela was under the dictatorial regime of Juan Vicente Gómez. His rule remains controversial because though he brought wealth to the country, developed modern infrastructure and ended the era of caudillismo, that shattered for so many years the economic and social welfare of Venezuelans, he used his power to enrich himself and left the country immersed in a profound illiteracy and culture primitivism.

      Santos Luzardo, a graduate lawyer of the Central University of Venezuela, returns to his father’s land in the plains of Apure to sell the land but desists when he discovers that it is controlled by a despotic woman, Doña Bárbara, also known as the men’s devourer; it is said that she uses seduction and pacts with demonic spirits to satisfy her whims and achieve power.

      Santos Luzardo meets his cousin Lorenzo Barquero and discovers that he was a victim of the femme fatale, who left him bankrupt and a daughter, Marisela, whom she abandoned and who became quickly a vagrant. Lorenzo lives in poverty in a miserable house consumed by his own constant drunkenness.

      Doña Bárbara falls in love with Santos Luzardo but he is charmed by Marisela, no longer living in abandonment and taken under Luzardo's care.

      The novel ends with the "defeat" of Doña Bárbara, who is not able to obtain neither the land nor Luzardo's heart, and finally departs to an unknown location.


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