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Reflections on Lorca's Private Mythology

"Once Five Years Pass</I> and the Rural Plays

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Beth Wellington

Federico García Lorca's autobiographical play, Once Five Years Pass deals directly with the discovery of his homosexual identity. While themes of sterility, desire, repression and death are central to this work, these themes are masked by the surrealistic language and plasticity that characterized his experimental theatre. Later, in his more traditional rural plays, Blood Wedding, Yerma, and The House of Bernarda Alba, Lorca sought to examine, at a safer distance, the themes elaborated in Once Five Years Pass. To this end, he removed himself from the center of the drama, creating a series of rural plays featuring women as the protagonists. An examination of the symbolic content in Blood Wedding, Yerma and The House of Bernarda Alba, which is more accessible in these traditionally structured works, supplies the key to the interpretation of Lorca's «unperformable» play.