Chronicle of a Death Foretold: the Manipulation of Time

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In Chronicle of a Death Foretold by Gabriel Garcia Marquez, there is a murder. Twenty-seven years later, a man tries to figure out why the murder took place. All throughout the story, Marquez changes the time around; the way he does this is through the man trying to solve the murder. The man is asking witnesses to tell him what they remember about the day of the murder and what events led up to the murder. The story is all mixed up though, and the pieces of information that he finds are not in chronological order. By so heavily manipulating the time like this, Marquez contributes to the story in three ways: it adds mystery and suspense to the story, it confuses the reader, and it makes the story more realistic.

By holding back information from the reader, Marquez adds this really exciting mystery and suspense to the story. For example, while reading Chronicle of a Death Foretold, all along I knew a death was going to take place, but throughout the story I was constantly finding myself trying to guess when it was actually going to happen. A few times it seemed like it would happen, but then it didn’t and I was puzzled again. With the suspense and mystery thrown into the story, it keeps the reader enterntained and guessing. Also, another bit of mystery found in this story, was that of the identity of the interviewer. In the end we never actually do find out who the strange man returning to solve the murder is. All we know is that he lived in the village and knew a lot of the people, including Santiago Nasar and the Vicaro twins, who were involved.

The format in which the story is told is not only initially confusing to the reader, but remains just as confusing throughout the book. I think Marquez meant to make it confusing, so that while you were reading the book, you were always making your own conclusions with the new information that was slowly being given to you, but only once you finished the book was it all resolved and made sense. If you confuse the...
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