A Very Old Man with Enormous Wings by Gabriel García Márquez

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Discuss the blend of realistic and fantastic details. Does this blend make the story more or less effective? Does it require a different type of reading than other stories you have read that contain...

Discuss the blend of realistic and fantastic details. Does this blend make the story more or less effective?

Does it require a different type of reading than other stories you have read that contain no elements of fantasy?

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Lori Steinbach eNotes educator | Certified Educator

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"A Very Old Man with Enormous Wings" is an intriguing blend  of the ordinary and the supernatural, of reality and the fantastic.  Consider the following:

  • A girl disobeys her parents (real) and is turned into a giant spider (fantastical).
  • A very sick little boy was healed (real) and, among others, a blind man did not have his sight restored but did grow three new teeth (supernatural).
  • A very old man (real) has enormous, and very natural-looking, wings (unreal).
  • Angels (or should I say, winged creatures who are apparently responsible for at least one actual miracle) are true and respected religious symbols (real) but this particular one is kept in a chicken...

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