Thursday, March 09, 2006

storyteller 2

The Storyteller
Part 1

I find myself disliking the narrator. I get the feeling that Llosa is using him as a voice of the western world, in which to better juxtapose the perspectives of Marcarita and the narrator. The narrator’s analysis of Mascarita’s exposure to the Machiguengas is what was described in Michrina and Richards as “going native.” The narrator instead, describes it as a fall into or from grace. One particular portion of the narrator’s descriptions that irked me specifically was his use of the word “half-breed” on page 24. I guess I took offense to it for the sole reason that I, too, am a “half-breed.” The narrator does not attribute any negative traits to the half-breed so there is really nothing to be offended about, but the term itself irritated me. This could have been a part of the translation, but I think it is meant to be part of the way that the narrator sees the world, and the cultural lens through which he sees the world.
Using Michrina and Richards as a guide, one could see that not only has Mascarito “gone native,” but that he gradually shifts his perspective through the first portion of the narrator’s observation of him. We can see the horizon of Mascarito changing to take on the worldviews of the tribe with which he is becoming intimate. He takes on the worldview of the tribe, his values paralleling the values of the tribe.

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