The Handsomest Drowned Man In The World, By Gabriel Garcia Marquez

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In the short story, “The Handsomest Drowned Man in the World,” by Gabriel Garcia Marquez, the villagers are changed drastically by their experience with the drowned man as they begin to view him, their own lives, and their village differently. Before the drowned man arrives, the villagers are content with their village that “was made up of only twenty-odd wooden houses that had stone courtyards with no flowers,” (1). When they discover the drowned man, the only thing they notice is that “he weighed more than any dead man they had ever known,” (1). As the women begin to clean him off they notice that “not only was he the tallest, strongest, most virile, and best built man they had ever seen, but even though they were looking at him there was no room for him in their imagination,” (2). The women begin to look…show more content…
Because of this, the women question the way their village is set up, saying that if Esteban had lived here, his house would have had “that widest doors, the highest ceilings, and the strongest floors,” (2). They begin to notice all of the things they could better in their village. They also compare Esteban to their own man, and end up “dismissing them deep in their hearts as the weakest, meanest, and most useless creatures on earth,” (2). They did not think about their men this way until Esteban arrives. After the women cover his face with a handkerchief, they realize that he looks “so forever dead, so defenseless, so much like their men” (3) that they begin to weep. At first, the men do not understand why the women are so intrigued with Esteban: “Since when has there ever been such a fuss over a drifting corpse, a drowned nobody, a piece of cold Wednesday meat,” (4). However after the women remove the handkerchief from Esteban’s face, “the men were left breathless,” (4). When it comes time for his funeral “it pained them to return him to the waters as an orphan and they
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