A Very Old Man with Enormous Wings by Gabriel García Márquez

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What are some symbols in "A Very Old Man with Enormous Wings?"

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There are a number of symbols that play a significant role in the development of themes in Marquez’s “A Very Old Man With Enormous Wings.” The old man’s wings are described as “buzzard wings, dirty and half-plucked . . . forever entangled in the mud.” The wings emphasize that he is earthly and human when he arrives in Pelayo’s home with dirty and torn wings. At the same time, however, the presence of even these broken wings makes the observers believe that he is an angel, or not from this world. With this duality established, the old man, by the end of the story, recovers his strength and flies off under the power of his now strong, angular, and majestic wings. The duality represented by the wings, then, can represent the theme of appearance versus reality and the notion that there can be magic in that which appears to lack magic.

The duality of the wings can also lead one to view the Old Man as a Christ figure. Christ is believed by many to be both man and God, sharing...

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