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The House of the Spirits; The Brothers 
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Post The House of the Spirits; The Brothers
The House of the Spirits
Isabel Allende

The Brothers



Mon Oct 31, 2011 1:44 pm
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Post Re: The House of the Spirits; The Brothers
Glad we got to meet the twins.

Surprised about Jamie. I would of thought he would of tried talking Amanda out of the abortion. Thought it was out of character for him to go ahead with the procedure without even questioning her about it.



Sat Dec 03, 2011 8:26 am
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Post Re: The House of the Spirits; The Brothers
I think Jamie was doing what he always had done - he was protecting his brother. Nicholas seems as eccentric as his Unlce Marcos. None of the family behaves as Esteban expects them to.


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Sat Dec 03, 2011 9:49 am
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Post Re: The House of the Spirits; The Brothers
Perhaps someone can help me here. At the bottom of page 260 - 261 Allende says
'Among that entire domestic fauna, the only one to have any importance in the collective memory of the family was a rabbit Miguel had once brought home, a poor ordinary rabbiot that the dogs had constantly licked until all its hair fell out and it became the only bald member of its species, boasting an irridescent coat that gave it the appearance of a large eared reptile'
What does she mean?


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Tue Dec 06, 2011 5:02 am
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Post Re: The House of the Spirits; The Brothers
The two main events of this chapter are a wedding and an abortion. They are contrasted to illustrate that the marriage of Blanca and the Count is abortive. What is happening here is that Blanca loves Pedro Tercero, the romantic revolutionary singer, whom her conservative father Esteban hates. When Blanca gets pregnant to her lover, her father wishes to save face by arranging a society marriage. The elaborate farce, with cathedral, bishops and 500 guests, includes a wedding dress designed to hide the belly of the bride. It is all about pretence.

Esteban is desperate to maintain appearances in service of his political ambitions as a Senator and his sense of proprietary. It just would not do for the scion of the Trueba family to marry a communist! The Count has been sponging around and is smitten by Blanca, and appears to be of the right social background. So the fix is in, and Blanca accepts her father's instruction to marry fast within her class. The omens are as disastrous as the knife in Barrabas' back at her mother Clara's engagement to Esteban. The count is a fake. But Esteban does not care, his focus is on the public perception. "He knew that the scandal would be the same whether she gave birth to a bastard child or married a peasant: society would condemn her in either case." (p246)

As with the abortion arranged by Esteban's son Jaime for his brother Nicolas and his girlfriend Amanda, the reality behind the upper class manipulation is rather ugly. Blanca is sold off like a chattel, and willingly acquiesces in her fate. The chapter starts with Blanca and Clara arriving in the city after being bashed by Esteban over the affair with Pedro Tercero.

All through, the mother Clara is the dreamy prophet, a Cassandra who sees reality but is fated to be ignored. Estaban's desire for legitimacy is the big fraud, especially considering his prima nocta behavior of sowing bastards like flowers.

"And so it was that on Saturday Esteban Trueba arrived at the big house on the corner with a husband for his daughter and a father for the little bastard. Esteban was shooting sparks of rage. With a sweep of his hand he knocked over the pot of chrysanthemums in the entry way and slapped Nicolas, who attempted to intercede and explain things, and he announced that he did not want to see Blanca, who was to remain locked up until her wedding day. Clara did not come to greet him. She stayed in her room and did not open her door even after he broke his silver cane in two trying to break it down." (p247)


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Last edited by Robert Tulip on Tue Dec 06, 2011 4:24 pm, edited 1 time in total.



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Post Re: The House of the Spirits; The Brothers
I didn't fully understand that about the rabbit either.

.....................

I think both brothers realized that Amanda wasn't the kind who would settle down and make a good mother. She might have married him and gave the baby a name but she would have run off on them anyway.

That's just my opinion, I dunno' ... that's the impression I got from her.



Fri Jan 20, 2012 11:48 am
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