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How do these walls mirror the ones we learned to build inside our bodies? Over 45 international writers and artists reflect on these questions and more in this groundbreaking anthology.
Continuing my literary jaunt through Mexico, I picked up Elena Garro's Los recuerdos del porvenir, which I'd ordered online last year after searching for a cheap/used copy for a couple of years.
While I'd wanted to read this book for a while, I hadn't done much of the preliminary internet searching I usually do as I prepare to read something by a new author.
I knew she was married to Octavio Paz, and I'd heard that this book is considered an early, pre-García Márquez incarnation of Magical Realism. As I began reading, I was surprised to find that the narrator of this book is not a person, but rather the town of Ixtepec itself: in telling the story of its (her) citizens and post-revolutionary military occupiers, the town speaks of "my streets," "my memories, "my past and future." It also inserts itself into the collective "we" when discussing the town's collective struggles or their perceptions of the military men and the other recently-arrived foreigner, the young and mysterious Felipe Hurtado.
I liked this unorthodox choice of narrator, and I was glad that it was handled with restraint, with the town staying in the background, occasionally reminding the reader of its identity without overshadowing the characters with its presence.