Gabriel Garcia Márquez Symbols

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Gabriel Garcia Márquez's deliberate language and symbolism in this quotation reveal a clear connection between the extermination of the banana plantation workers and the ultimate extermination of the Buendía family and, subsequently, Macondo itself at the end of the novel. Márquez compares the panic of the attack to "a dragon's tail," flailing futilely against itself as machine guns open fire from all sides. Márquez makes it clear that though outside forces—the machine guns—contribute to the panic, the people themselves are heightening the frenzy by unknowingly and counterproductively running into each other. The Buendía family is repeatedly seen to form their own metaphorical dragon tails and thrash into each other. For example, they contribute …show more content…
He describes the remaining banana plantation workers as trapped in "a gigantic whirlwind that little by little was being reduced to its epicenter." He then compares this reduction to an onion peeled by the "insatiable and methodical shears of machine guns." Using and repeating the circular imagery ties this passage in with the grander theme of circular motion throughout the novel. By describing the killings as reducing a whirlwind little by little, Márquez foreshadows the slow but steady killing off of each major character in the last couple chapters of the novel when the Buendía family is whittled down to a sparse few. In this scene, the only survivors mentioned are José Arcadio Segundo, the child he is holding, and the kneeling woman, while the only three Buendias left by the end of the novel are strikingly similar: Aureliano, Amaranta Úrsula, and their child, Aureliano. Márquez draws this parallel between the survivors of the massacre and the survivors of the Buendía clan to demonstrate how the two groups will meet parallel fates. Márquez compares the chaos that is killing off the plantation workers to a whirlwind, not dissimilar to the wind that wipes out Macondo at the conclusion of the

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