EL GUARDAGUJAS ARREOLA PDF

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The Switchman (El Guardagujas) by Juan José Arreola, |

The switchman says he cannot promise that he can get the stranger a train to T. It seems that, although an elaborate network of railroads has been planned and partially completed, the service is highly unreliable. Learn more about citation styles Citation giardagujas Encyclopedia. Modern Language Association http: The railroad tracks melting away in the distance represent the unknown future, while the elaborate network of uncompleted railroads evokes people’s vain efforts to put into effect rational schemes.

The details of the story do not really support his claim that he is indeed an official switchman, so it may be that his tales represent a system that presents absurdity as an official truth and relies on the gullibility of the audience.

The stranger still wishes to travel on his train to T.

El guardagujas/ The Switchman

Camus writes that neither humans alone nor the world by itself is absurd. In one case, where the train reached an abyss with no bridge, the passengers happily broke down and rebuilt the train on the other side. As the man speculates guardaagujas where his train might be, he feels a touch on his shoulder and turns to see a small old man dressed like a railroader and carrying a lantern.

Mexican literature short stories. In addition, it is not really clear that the system does operate in the way the switchman claims: The latter comes closest to the guaddagujas convincing interpretation, namely, that Arreola has based his tale on Albert Camus ‘s philosophy of the absurd as set forth in The Myth of Sisyphus, a collection of essays Camus published in The switchman’s anecdote about the founding of the village F, which occurred when a train accident stranded a group of passengers—now happy settlers—in a remote region, illustrates the element of chance in human existence.

The switchman then tells a story of certain train rides when the trains arrived at impossible locations. Rather, the absurd arises from the clash between reasoning humans striving for order and the silent, unreasonable world offering no response to their persistent demands.

It was republished ten years later along with other published works by Arreola at that time in the collection El Confabulario total.

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And the conductors’ pride in never failing to deposit their deceased passengers on the station platforms as prescribed by their tickets suggests that the only certain human destination is death, a fundamental absurdist concept. Thus, the stranger’s heavy suitcase symbolizes the burden of reason he carries about, and the inn guarddagujas a jail, the place where others like him are lodged before setting out on life’s absurd journey.

In their view, their elaborate system, which includes accommodations for years-long trips and even for deaths, is very good. The Guadagujas Original title: The switchman explains how the railroad company thinks of their railway system. The residents accept this system, but hope for a change in the system.

Retrieved December 31, from Encyclopedia. Views Read Edit View history. But it soon becomes apparent from the information provided him by his interlocutor that the uncertain journey he is about to undertake is a metaphor of the absurd human condition described by Camus.

He vanishes because he has fulfilled his role as the stranger’s subconscious by not only asking the Camusian question “Why? As demonstrated by its numerous interpretations, “The Switchman” is fraught with ambiguity. His best-known and most anthologized tale, “The Switchman” exemplifies his taste for humor, satire, fantasy, and philosophical themes.

When he asks if the train has left, the old man wonders if the traveler has been in the country very long and advises him to find lodging at the local inn for at least a month. In some cases, new towns, like the town of F. The stranger is also told it should make no difference to him whether or not he reaches T, that once he is on the train his life “will indeed take on some direction.

The switchman tells the stranger that the inn is filled with people who have made that very same assumption, and who may one day actually get there. Briefly summarized, “The Switchman” portrays a stranger burdened with a heavy suitcase who arrives at a deserted station at the exact time his train is supposed to leave.

Though some consider him to be a pioneer in the field on non-realistic literature, critics of him felt that social conditions in Mexico demanded a more realistic examination of the inequalities.

But upon inquiring again where the stranger wants to go, the switchman receives the answer X instead of T. This page was last edited on 8 Septemberat The “switchman” tells the stranger that the country is famous for its railroad system; though many timetables and tickets have been produced, the trains do not follow them well.

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Another episode involves a trainload of energetic passengers who became heroes absurd heroes in Camusian terms when they disassembled their train, carried it across a bridgeless chasm, and reassembled it on the other side in order to complete their journey.

From the first lines of “The Switchman” the stranger stands out as a man of reason, fully expecting that, because he has a ticket to T, the train will take him there on time.

El guardagujas de Juan Jósé Arreola by Davi Mesquita Bodingbauer on Prezi

The image immediately thereafter of the tiny red lantern swinging back and forth before the onrushing train conveys the story’s principal theme: From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. There are clearly rails laid down for a train, but nothing to indicate that a train does indeed pass through this particular station.

As the stranger is very interested in this, the switchman once again encourages the stranger to try his luck, but warns him not to talk to fellow passengers, who may be spies, and to watch out for mirages that the railroad company generates. The railroad management was so pleased that they decided to suspend any official bridge building and instead encourage the stripping and recreation of future trains.

It has been seen as a satire on Mexico’s railroad service and the Mexican character, as a lesson taught by the instincts to a human soul about to be born, as a modern allegory of Christianity, as a complex political satire, as a surrealistic fantasy on the illusive nature of reality, and as an existentialist view of life with Mexican modifications. Where there is only one rail instead of two, the trains zip along and allow the first class passengers the side of the train riding on the rail.

The stranger argues that he should be able to go to T. Arreola’s ingenious tale exudes a very Mexican flavor, but above all else it is a universal statement on the existential human’s precarious place in the world.

He does not understand why the stranger insists on going to T.

He asks the stranger for the name of the station he wants to go to and the stranger says it is “X.