Lecture 17 - Don Quixote, Part II: Chapters XXII-XXXV

author: Roberto González Echevarría, Yale University
recorded by: Yale University
published: Sept. 28, 2012,   recorded: November 2009,   views: 2215
released under terms of: Creative Commons Attribution No Derivatives (CC-BY-ND)
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Description

This lecture covers two of the most important episodes of Part II of the Quixote: the descent into Montesinos cave and Master Peter's puppet show. The first one, on the one hand, engages the main literary topics and sources of the novel. Cervantes, by submitting Don Quixote's fantasies to natural law, questions the belief in the authenticity of the romances of chivalry and the reality of what his protagonist sees. The episode also provides a glimpse into the inner workings of Don Quixote's subconscious: his descent is a harsh look onto himself which, while not completely destroying his beliefs, weakens them seriously, and from now on he will act saner. Master Peter's puppet show introduces again Ginés de Pasamonte, the character who represents the figure of the modern author in both parts of the novel. With Ginés now disguised as a master puppeteer, Cervantes criticizes his contemporary playwright Lope de Vega, but most importantly, through the complex trompe-l'oeil that the puppet show constitutes, Cervantes analyzes the act of mimesis.

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