Jorge Amado Long Fiction Analysis
Some critics are made uneasy by the coexistence in Jorge Amado of Marxist commitment and the Bahian version of far niente, or “Let the good times roll.” Amado’s duality was evidenced by his popularity on both sides of the Iron Curtain and by the unlikely conjunction of his early propagandistic novels and his later spate of sexy best sellers. There is more consistency in Amado’s career than first appears, however. As Amado himself maintained, his sympathies throughout his writing were with the working class and the poor. In part, Amado’s metamorphoses indicate his strategy: He had to present his case in the face of disinterest, opposition, and censorship. After all, if sex and humor could be used to sell toothpaste and automobiles, then they could be used to sell Marxist views. Amado also answered the question of what to do while one waits for the revolution: One has a good time and invites the rich to a party. Indeed, in Amado’s easygoing Marxism, revolution might not even be necessary, as modern society seems to be evolving on its own toward a humane civilization free of want, repression, and prejudices.
The duality in Amado’s outlook is reflected in his depiction of the working-class poor. They are ground down by hunger and serfdom, yet, paradoxically, they are also heroic. As a class they are heroic because it is mainly with their blood, sweat, and tears that civilization has been built. The working class also furnishes most of...
(The entire section is 2871 words.)
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