Lecture 16 - Don Quixote, Part II: Chapters XII-XXI (cont.)

author: Roberto González Echevarría, Yale University
recorded by: Yale University
published: Sept. 28, 2012,   recorded: November 2009,   views: 2016
released under terms of: Creative Commons Attribution No Derivatives (CC-BY-ND)
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The loose format of the Quixote allows for the incorporation of different stories and texts, such as the Camacho's wedding, which was going to be a play. The episode, a form of epithalamium based on the myth of Pyramus and Thisbe, states one of the main themes of part two, that art corrects nature. As a way of turning deceit, which would normally lead to disillusionment, into a happy ending, in Camacho's wedding episode art helps nature to attain good ending. González Echevarría claims that in this episode there is a subtext in which marriage is not only a legal institution but also a transcendental metamorphosis of matter, or transubstantiation. The literal blending of bloods that makes marriage indivisible is echoed here through what González Echevarría calls 'the itinerary of blood.' In the interpretation of the myth Cervantes resembles Velázquez in that they both show the inner recesses of representation: they show creation as a layered process that ultimately involves the real.

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