Power is always there in society, and along with power comes corruptness. Through careful characterization and spare dialogue, Gabriel Garcia Marquez develops the idea of power and corruption through a dentist and a mayor in his South American country of Columbia.
As a poor dentist, Aurelio Escovar’s voice is often unheard until he meets directly with the mayor. The dentist is characterized as poor because he is a ‘dentist without a degree’ therefore he has a weak position. The Mayor, on the other hand, is a powerful person. This detail is established when the dentist’s son says, “He says if you don’t’ take out his tooth, he’ll shoot you.” The gun signifies power, the mayor held this power. The Mayor is an official of corrupt political power. This conflict is recognized when the dentist refused to see the Mayor.
Once the Mayor entered the dentist’s office, the power shifted. The Mayor was once powerful, but his infected brings him to the dentist’s mercy. Power can be determined by the eyes. When the dentist saw the Mayor, the Mayor’s eyes were dull and held desperation. His eyes showed weakness and the dentist held the power to help him. “He did all this without looking at the Mayor. But the Mayor didn’t take his eyes off him.” The dentist avoided eye contact with the Mayor which is disrespectful but signifies his power over him. The Mayor’s eyes were on the dentist, which shows that he’s weak, he feel uncomfortable and watches the dentist who holds the power. The dentist takes this opportunity and uses his profession to take revenge upon the Mayor. Before the dentist yanks out the Mayor’s tooth without anesthesia, he says, “Now you’ll pay for our twenty dead men.” He deliberately carries out the procedure without anesthesia to bring pain to the Mayor to avenge the pain that other’s have suffered from the Mayor.
The dentist’s power is only temporary and has again shifted once the Mayor recovered. The Mayor didn’t look at the dentist showing that he...
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