In the short story, “The Handsomest Drowned Man in the World, “magical realism is seen in the way the villagers treat the drowned man. The time and effort they put into Esteban make him become more real than the other characters in the story. He is the only one given a name and personality. When reading, I feel the love and compassion the villagers have for the drowned man. They take his corpse in and make him one of them and treat him as such. The drowned man is seen as a mythical creature because of his size and wonderful good looks. All the villagers get lost in his beautiful face. The villagers in “The Handsomest Drowned Man in the World, treat the drowned man is with dignity and respect. They clean him up, dress him in nice clothes, name him and give him a proper funeral. They even decided to clean up their village and make it bigger and bright so when ships pass by, they will know it is “Esteban’s village.” The villagers in “A Very Old Man with Enormous Wings,” treat the old man with little to none compassion and respect. They demanded answers or cures for their alignments and problems; they pluck feathers from his wings and even sear him with a branding iron to see whether he’s still alive. Father Gonzaga tries to dissolve the rumor that the man is an angel and tries to control the crowds that come to see him. Pelayo shows the old man compassion by giving him a place to live and guarding the old man from harm. However, he does use the old man to get rich, which in my eyes cancels out the little bit of compassion he shows.
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