Don Quixote: Reader Response

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  • Topic: Don Quixote, Novel, Miguel de Cervantes
  • Pages : 2 (540 words )
  • Download(s) : 122
  • Published : March 24, 2013
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Michael B
Reader Response (Don Quixote)
Don Quixote is an alias taken up by a middle aged man in La Mancha Spain who has driven himself mad through the reading of old chivalrous stories that tell of knights and great battles. He soon decides to become a knight and after finding and fixes his old family armor sets off for adventures and glory. Obviously these books have had profound effects on him as he loses his grip on reality. The first incident happens when he comes upon an inn that he believes to be a castle where he insists that the innkeeper, who he believes to be a king, knight him. He spends the entire night there until he gets into a fight with some men who try to take his armor out of their mule’s trough and he attacks them. Soon after the innkeeper pronounces him a knight simply to be rid of him. Cervantes draws the reader in with his use of Don Quixote’s perspective. Quixote sees what his imagination creates from these stories he’s read and not what is actually there or happening. Later after he leaves the inn Don Quixote hears crying and comes across a boy being flogged by a farmer. When questioned the farmer explains that the boy has been failing in his duties but the boy tells Quixote that the farmer has not been paying him. Don Quixote hearing this thinks that the farmer is a knight and tells the man to pay the boy. When the boy tries to explain that the farmer is not a knight Quixote ignores him and asks the farmer to swear on his knighthood that he will pay the boy and once Quixote leaves the farmer continues to beat the boy but this time more severely. Cervantes here gives us a perfect example of why the modern term Quixotism was coined from the novel Don Quixote. The definition of quixotism is when someone has succumbed to misguided idealism. In this scene Don Quixote because of his misplaced faith in the old stories of chivalry intervenes in a situation and only succeeds in making things worse for the boy he had originally tried to...
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