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IB 11 English A1 - World Literature

Blood Wedding by Federico Garcia Lorca

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Tragedy in the Spanish Countryside

        Blood Wedding is a tragic play in three acts written by Federico Garcia Lorca. The play begins with the struggle for a man, the bridegroom, to find the woman of his dreams and marry her. However, the woman to whom the bridegroom wishes to be married was previously engaged to a man named Leonardo. The bridegroom is caught in a quandary because Leonardo is a member of the Felix family. This is especially problematic because the Felix family is caught in a brutal family feud with the Bridegroom’s family. As a result of this feud, the Bridegroom’s father and brother were viciously and mercilessly murdered. This left an emotional scar on the Bridegroom and his helpless mother. As the plot progresses, the reader discovers that the bride is still madly in love with Leonardo, despite the fact that he has since married the bride‘s cousin. In reality, the bride only tries to mask her emotions for Leonardo with a marriage to the bridegroom. This proves to be troublesome because the bride’s desires take hold and she runs away with Leonardo after the wedding has taken place. A lively hunt ensues, with the bridegroom madly searching for his bride. Also, the bridegroom is looking to get revenge on Leonardo for the Felix’s despicable crimes, and for Leonardo stealing the bridegroom’s woman. In a final dramatic duel (which, by the way, is not included in the play at all) both Leonardo and the bridegroom perish in a fateful twist, leaving the bride and the mother emotionally unstable and suicidal. Hence, Blood Wedding is a unique play that captures the drama of human interaction, and fortifies and manifests it in an interesting and magnificent portrayal of Spanish and Andalusian culture.

            Some themes present in Blood Wedding are the cycle of life, the progression of time, choice, deception, fate, and nature. The cycle of life and progression of time are illustrated by the simple fact that the entire play is devoted to a wedding. The process of marriage in every culture marks the concrete and tangible evidence of a passage from childhood to adulthood, and a progression through life and time.

            The theme of choice is evident through the characters of Leonardo the bride, and the bridegroom. The bride is very conflicted because she forces herself to marry the bridegroom, when in reality she is still in love with Leonardo. Leonardo, despite being married, is also still madly in love with the bride. Their combined choice to run away with each other after the marriage is one that manifests their latent and pent up desires left over from their previous relationship. The choice of the bridegroom is his woman. Despite the fact that she lives in a cave located hours away, the bridegroom still loves the bride and takes her as the woman he wants to remain with for the remainder of his life.

            The theme of deception ties into the theme of choice. The bride is deceitful and deceptive by masking her residual yearnings for Leonardo with a marriage to another man. This choice is dishonest because deep down the bride knows how she feels, and the only reason she even attempts to marry the bridegroom is because she is manipulating him in order to distract herself from her ‘troubling’ desires for Leonardo.

            The theme of fate also ties into the themes of choice and deception. The choice on the bride’s part to marry the bridegroom, despite the fact that she still retains feelings for her ex, causes the outcome of the deaths of both men in the end of the play. There is a certain degree of irony in action because what are the chances that a woman would try to choose both men and yet lose both instead of winning one? Fate plays a very important role in the drama of Blood Wedding with its surprising twists and turns in the plot, and the final result as well.

            Finally, the theme of nature is present in Blood Wedding. Nature is pertinent to understanding Lorca’s play. Blood Wedding is full of references to nature, such as the moon, the trees, the river (“arroyo”), death in the form of the beggar woman, the vineyard, orange blossoms, and many others. These references to nature reinforce the fact that the play is based on a true story. Also, including nature in the play help to stress the other literary devices such as plot, conflict, climax, etc. Therefore, Blood Wedding is a warped, original work that holds the attention of the audience in a death grip, as is the style of Federico Garcia Lorca.

 

Click Here to Download a Sample Final Assessment for Blood Wedding

Click Here to Download an Exemplary Analysis of a Scene from Blood Wedding

Click the above links to download exemplary analyses of literature. Notice the in-depth critique that literature requires. Also note word choice, and the emphasis on the effects of the devices. Feel free to imitate these analyses with other pieces of literature, or use these analyses as a prototype for your own future analyses; however, both the summary and the above documents are my intellectual property and it is considered plaigarism by the IBO to steal this work from me. If you wish to use my ideas, quote or paraphrase; be sure to cite properly. Thank you.

Never give up. If you feel as if the text you are analyzing is worthless, look again more closely. Try reading it aloud. If worse comes to worse, talk about the diction (word choice), setting, tone, mood, message, and other basic elements. This may lead you to see the purpose of other devices like simile, metaphor, foreshadowing, litotes (hyperbole), understatement, and the list goes on and on.