The Family of Pascual Duarte – Camilo José Cela – 1942 – 39 – Spanish

Title: The Family of Pascual Duarte

Author: Camilo José Cela

Original language: Spanish

Translation(s): 39 languages

Context: The Family of Pascual Duarte (1942) is a translated novel by the Spanish writer, Camilo José Cela. The novel is believed to have given new life to Spanish literature. Narrative style used by the author emphasizes grotesque imagery and violence.

Synopsis: The story is about Pascual Duarte whose life turns into an implacable nightmare as he grows up in a brutal world of moral corruption, hatred and poverty. He commits a series of murders for which he is put into prison and is to be executed. Sitting in his prison cell, he publicly confesses about his wrongdoings. While he presents his harrowing life, which includes his unfaithful wife, his despicable mother and savage crimes he committed, he writes with a guileless and innocent sense of the world. In his writings he presents himself as someone who has been distorted by the barbaric hand of destiny, leading him towards a bloody path. Pascaul has an existential interpretation on the senseless murders he committed.

The novel is fundamental to the generation of tremendismo (derived from the word, (tremendous, awful). Main emphasis is on the way characters are treated in novel marked by frequent and extended scenes of violence. Extreme themes of existentialism and realism are contained in the novel. The characters live a life submerged in poverty, pain and anguish and learn that the only away to resolve problems is violence.

Other works by the Author:

1942 – The Family of Pascual Duarte

1943 – Rest Home

1944 – La Nave

1951 – Buenos Aires

1953 Mrs. Caldwell Speaks to Her Son

1955 – Noguer

1962 – Noguer

1969 – Madrid: Alfaguara

1973 – Barcelona: Noguer

1983 Barcelona:Seix Barral

1988 – Barcelona: Seix Barral

1989 Barcelona: Plaza & Janes

1994 –Barcelona: Planeta

1999 – Madrid: Espasa-Calpe

Short-story collections

1947 – Barcelona: Jose Janes

1949 – Madrid: Ricardo Aguilera

1953 – Valencia: Castalia

1956 – Barcelona: Noguer

1957 – Barcelona: Destino

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