While the public has adored fantasy novels for centuries, it wasn’t until well into the twentieth century that novels containing fantastical elements started to receive literary acclaim. And no one author was more responsible for that change than Gabriel Garcia Marquez, who died this past Thursday, April 17. Marquez is considered one of the greatest Latin American authors to ever live, and one of the fathers of the literary genre magical realism.
So what is magical realism, exactly?
1. What is Realism?
Before we get into magical realism, let’s talk about realism, the movement it was playing off of.
Realism began as an artistic movement in the 19th century around the work of visual artist Gustave Courbet. Before Courbet, artists of the Romantic period had produced work that idealized reality. Landscapes were more beautiful, emotions exaggerated, and