FL 380: An Archaeology of the "Boom": Modern Latin American Prose Fiction

Reading Guide to Fuentes #2
The Death of Artemio Cruz

  1. 87 "What weakness. Always when I wake up, this weakness..."
    a. What is Catalina's quandary?
  2. 88 "her father represented continuity, the old order, hierarchy."
  3. 90 "I accepted, just as he wanted me to..."
  4. 91 Don Pizarro: "You must get some pleasure, seeing all this ancient pride tumble down..."
  5. 91-92 "Don Gamaliel felt the proximity of death..."
    a. Why this spectacle?
  6. 93 Catalina's quandary: "Do I have a right to destroy his love, if his love is true?"
  7. 94 "Do I have a right to deny myself the possibility of happiness?"
  8. 95 "He could have told her, but .... He wanted to avoid that return."
    a. Why cannot Artemio tell Catalina about himself and his love for her?
  9. 96 "She would let herself go..."
  10. 96 "It was an invitation to adventure..."
    a. What adventure is this that Artemio offers Catalina?
  11. 97 Catalina's quandary: "I am hopelessly in love with this man..."
  12. 101 "She took the reins..."
    a. Catalina's sense of class?
    b. Her quandary: "Why have you given me this life in which I must choose?"
  13. 104 "Why should God be on your side, fraud?"
  14. 105 "Forgive me, then. I ask you again."
  15. 106-107 "Do you think that, after doing all you've done, you still have a right to love? (. . .) We'll never be the same."
    a. A question of lost innocence v. the imperative of life.
  16. 107 "Yes, I am here at your side because I let others die for me . . . Don't hate me. Take pity on me Catalina..."
    a. An honest proposal?
  17. 108 The garden and the stars.
  18. 110 "Fuck God. . ."
    a. To rebel or to acquiesce?
  19. 111 "Sure, sure. It's wonderful that our ideas and our interests are the same, isn't that right?
    a. "Oh we never intervene."
         i. Mexican-American political relations.
  20. 113 "All right, then, bitches, just imagine . . . Only in those two places, let me tell you, is there any dignity, not in the middle, not in the envy, the monotony, the lines."
  21. 114 "You will stand fast"
    a. Debts, acknowledgement, and payment.
  22. 115 "You think that it's impossible to choose, that no one should choose...."
    a. Choice, responsibilities, and life.
    b. Authenticity.
  23. 116 "Don't feel ashamed, don't feel anything..."
  24. 116 "To live is to betray your God. Every act in life, every act that affirms us as living beings, requires that the commandments of your God be broken."
  25. 116 A chat between Cruz, Gavilán, and others:
    a. The greatest good for the nation v. personal well being.
  26. 117 "You reject guilt."
    a. Is this a tenable position?
  27. 133 "We crossed the river on horseback": A memory.
  28. 136-138 The motherfuckers v. The fucked up (Chingones v. chingados)
    a. A polar cultural conflict.
    b. Mexicans: "Born of the fucked mother": La Chingada
  29. 139 "you're a son of the fucked mother / of the outrage... / ... to remember."
  30. 143 Acapulco 1947: "From his table, he could see..."
  31. 144 On Lilia: "The wordless contact between them... (. . .) He got her."
  32. 150 "Their raucous laughter reached his ears (. . .) Committed by everyone."
    a. What are the implications of this posture?
  33. 155 On Heaven: "That heaven represents power over men (. . .) that's really being God, right?"
  34. 158-162 Lorenzo a son not present: Source of the memory: "We crossed the river on horseback"
    a. "You will remember. Yes, that last day you and he were together there..."
    b. One memory brings others.
  35. 171 "He thought about the women he would have wanted to know..."
  36. 171 A different sort of hope: "Maybe peace would mean good job opportunities..."
  37. 176 Zagal's proposal to Cruz.
  38. 177 Cruz's proposal to Zagal.
  39. 178-193 An encounter: Artemio Cruz, Gonzalo Bernal, Tobías, the Yaqui
    a. On the view from death.
    b. On revolution and revolutionary leadership.
    c. On memories and hopes for a future not to be had.
    d. On opening up to others.
    e. Artemio's gamble.
    f. Zagal and Artemio.
  40. 195 Artemio on Catalina: "Why didn't we ever say it?"
  41. 198-201 You will survive...
    a. On humankind, time, and history.
    b. On humankind, technology, and survival.
    c. On evolution and survival.
    d. On being human, that is, on being Artemio Cruz.
    e. "You will decide, you will choose one of the roads, you will sacrifice the others."
    f. The labyrinth of solitude...
    g. "Memory is satisfied desire" Why???