Why is the narrator obsessed with them and how does he finally turn into one? There are multiple responses to these questions, along with each individual interpretation based on internal explorations of the text. However, these interpretations are, academically and analytically, worth very little if they do not include external explorations as well. Therefore, to answer such questions specifically, readers must look to historical and cultural context. Bilingualism, in addition to poverty, made him see Europe as a continent of wealth, culture, and education Stavans By the time he published his first collection of stories, it was and the beginning of the Latin American literary boom.
|Published (Last):||8 March 2019|
|PDF File Size:||8.25 Mb|
|ePub File Size:||13.28 Mb|
|Price:||Free* [*Free Regsitration Required]|
The narrator of Axolotl is a potentially imbalanced child which brings question to the truthfulness of any of what is written in the story. However this just emphasizes the fact that this boy is probably very lonely, only making friends with the animals. He constantly contradicts himself, so why should his instance give us any reason to think differently?
The narrator is obviously not all there, so any fact he affirms, should be considered but not instantly believed. However, this potentially makes him an unreliable narrator. In the scholarly article by Mark D. Harris about this short story, Harris brings forth the idea that the narrator can be seen as deceitful in numerous ways.
The scholarly article written by Maurice J. A person who does not experience proper human social interaction is likely to succumb to changes and manipulation.
These solitary creatures act as a mirror image of the narrator, and the reader can watch idly by as the mirror begins to blur the line between reality. It becomes less obvious who is observing whom and by the end of it either the narrator has gone completely mad from his isolation, his obsession has left him and embodied itself as an Axolotl, or he really does become an Axolotl.
The narrator as viewed by Doris T. Wight is completely insane with no doubt about it. It is very backwards and a reader could drive themselves in circles about the truths or falsities of this story. The reader can at least understand that at some point the narrator was sane, because directly after the first paragraph the things he says are obviously reasonable and logical.
This enhances the assumption that he was merely a lonely, albeit not completely normal boy, who was slowly driven mad over the course of his time with the strange creatures. Paula M. Bruno finds intent behind barriers in stories as divisions of even obvious things like gender.
Here in this story, it is the boundary between reality and fantasy, or maybe sanity and insanity. Though this is just an assumption, it is actually something that delves into truth. Water creates the illusion of timelessness or a slowed down perception of time. He is trapped by their very lack of acting on him, and it is understandable then that he would remain longer hours than intended, and eventually lose himself to their grasp.
This, or he is truly insane. People often trust what they read when it sounds reasonable and stop believing it once it goes past realism into fantasy. It should also be understood that readers are sometimes too skeptical about a story when they think it is written by a lunatic, and may choose to not believe something that is in fact an implausible but true story.
This short story blurs that line and makes it difficult to tell if we are being lied to or if we are choosing to not trust someone who actually lived through a unique and captivating experience. The ambiguity of the story consistently confuses the reader but is expertly used to make them reevaluate themselves, and the meaning of their own existence just as the narrator does.
In the way that there is a boundary between the human world and the aquarium, there is also a divide between the real world and the written. This parallel can make one lose oneself in the story, and make it even harder to distinguish from truth and lies. Bennett, Maurice J.
Bruno, Paula M. Harris, Mark D. You are commenting using your WordPress. You are commenting using your Google account. You are commenting using your Twitter account. You are commenting using your Facebook account. Notify me of new comments via email. Notify me of new posts via email. Share this: Twitter Facebook. Like this: Like Loading Leave a Reply Cancel reply Enter your comment here Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:. Email required Address never made public. Name required.
I Am Prisoner in the Body of an Axolotl: Human Isolation in Julio Cortázar’s Axolotl
Situating the story in the history of fascination, the article highlights how it repeats well-known themes from this history. As such, the fascinating story of a man's obsession with an axolotl suggests that fascination became a major aspect of cultural reproduction and reconfiguration during the 20 th century. In recent decades there has been a surging interest in the history and theory of fascination among scholars of literature, art, media, and communication. One arena where scenes of fascination are set up and tested is literature.
Fascination, Ancient and Modern
The Jardin des Plantes is located near the Sorbonne in one of the oldest and most appealing neighborhoods of Paris, just along the Left Bank of the Seine. It is also subtlely unnerving in its combination of realistic and fantastic elements, especially as the joining of the two is virtually seamless. Scarcely 2, words in length, the story "Axolotl" collected in Final de juego is representative of magical realism, a South American style of fiction that introduces patently preposterous subjects and events in an offhand manner and then explores their natures in a closely detailed way. The title itself would be meaningful only to a marine biologist, and so the story's narrator takes time to look up the name in a library: "axolotls are the larval stage provided with gills of a species of salamander of the genus Ambystoma. Where in the city—"one spring morning when Paris was spreading its peacock tail after a wintry Lent"—can they be seen? In the aquarium at the Jardin des Plantes, where the narrator has begun his tale, advising that "there was a time when I thought a great deal about the axolotls," and revealing just two lines later in the story's first paragraph, "Now I am an axolotl. That the action begins "by chance" makes its tone all the more effective, for terror disarms best when presented as happenstance a feature of Poe's tales of the fantastic set in a Paris of a century and a half before.
Axolotl by Julio Cortázar, 1964
The narrator of Axolotl is a potentially imbalanced child which brings question to the truthfulness of any of what is written in the story. However this just emphasizes the fact that this boy is probably very lonely, only making friends with the animals. He constantly contradicts himself, so why should his instance give us any reason to think differently? The narrator is obviously not all there, so any fact he affirms, should be considered but not instantly believed.