Readings on Graciliano Ramos’s Novels
Chapter 1: In the Beginning Was the Lesser Being (And the Word)
C H A P T E R O N E In the Beginning Was the Lesser Being (And the Word) “Se se calcular isso direito, o senhor está morto, Seu Varejão.” Graciliano Ramos, Caetés (1933)1 “Não faz mal que vocês desapareçam. Propriamente, vocês nunca viveram.” Graciliano Ramos, Angústia (1936)2 In recalling his arrest in March 1936, because of a State persecution of com- munists (or supposed communists), Graciliano Ramos speculates on his possible culpability, even though he was not affiliated to the Communist Party nor had he been involved in any revolutionary act. Had he not, Ramos ponders, in fact furi- ously desired to see the demise of capitalism and seen with great satisfaction walls plastered with revolutionary slogans? Besides, if they were to put his desires into actions, would they not find enough reason to convict him? He did not loathe the idea of executing property owners just because they owned property, and so it would be reasonable for them to punish him for his intentions (Memórias 1: 46). Despite this period of coercion and lack of freedom, Ramos states, writers should not blame it for not having written or for having produced works of poor or lesser value. For “[l]iberdade completa ninguém desfruta” (“[n]o one enjoys complete freedom”); and yet, “nos estreitos limites a que nos coagem a gramática e a lei, ainda nos podemos mexer” (1: 34; “within the narrow limits with which...
You are not authenticated to view the full text of this chapter or article.
This site requires a subscription or purchase to access the full text of books or journals.
Do you have any questions? Contact us.Or login to access all content.