Analysis Of Mist And Saint Manuel
The reality, or not, of a setting contributes to the style. In
Mist and Saint Manuel, Martyr, Unamuno blends the real and the mythical into his settings. While the specific setting of Mist is little-described, Augusto describes his life as a “mist” in a “nebulous” world (Mist 33). Meanwhile, the town of Valverde de Lucerna reveres its deep lake and snowy mountain, which are realistic components of the setting, but they hold deeper significance when linked to religion.
In the title itself, Mist hints at the countless references to “mist,” “fog,” or “nebula” found throughout the book. Augusto perceives his setting as a foggy world in which everyone is a “foundling” (Mist 60) searching for the way. After meeting Eugenia, he reflects, “And life is just this–mist. Life is a nebula. And out of it now rises Eugenia…there she turned up right in front of me” (Mist 31). The setting also takes on a fantastical quality when it shifts to match Augusto’s emotions. For instance, after an argument with Eugenia, he is “beside himself, and he [is] hardly aware of his existence…in the mist of confusion that enwrap[s] him (Mist 120). Another day, when he becomes …show more content…
In addition, Unamuno includes a form of direct address to the reader in the above quote, including him or her in the work itself, with the apostrophe “you ask.” Again, just as in Mist, Unamuno makes reference to nivolas and “novelistic narratives” as an individual genre. In both works, reality and fantasy are pitted against each other. A key comparison between the two is that the narrators, Unamuno and Angela, question their own beliefs, dreams, and realities. As discussed, Unamuno does serve a dual role as author and narrator, just another metafictive element. In Mist, the shade of Augusto appears to Unamuno in a dream,
“ ‘And now, now that you are asleep and dreaming and know that you are, and now that I am a dream and know that I am one–now, then, I am going to repeat to you what so greatly disturbed you when I said it before. Listen to me, my dear Don Miguel: it is quite possible that you are an entity of fiction, one who does not really exist, who is neither living nor dead. It may easily be that you are nothing more than an excuse for spreading my story through the world, and other stories like mine; and that presently, when you are dead and gone, it is we who keep your soul alive…’ He evaporate[s] into the blackish mist.” (Mist