Complete summary of Alejo Carpentier’s The Lost Steps. eNotes plot summaries cover all the significant action of The Lost Steps. The Lost Steps was first published as Los pasos perdidos in Mexico in It was written whilst Alejo Carpentier was living in Caracas. The Lost Steps, by Alejo Carpentier. I discovered this book on the office charity table and picked it up for a dollar. I had only heard of Carpentier.

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Ultimately, the narrator is a paradox. The issues that he struggles with aren’t central for me, and he seems to dedicate most of his energy to creating characters that again, for me are grotesque caricatures, grotesque because they are working off all sorts of assumptions that strike me as obviously false.

The Lost Steps | Reading After Dark

Llost headlong flight the years emptied, ran backward, were erased, restoring calendars, moons, changing centuries numbered in three figures to those of single numbers. Home Current Catalogs Blog. Notify me of new posts via email.

He is actually quite consistent and sane, but open to being changed by the world, and always struggling to reach a place of well-being, though often in vain. Fill in your details below or click an icon to tseps in: Sep 28, Nick M rated it it was amazing Shelves: However, I did not enjoy this book. They reach Puerto Anunciacion on the edge of the jungle where he argues violently with Mouche, then meets Adelantado, who recounts tales of semi-secret life in the jungle.

Thematic concerns include the emptiness of modern existence and existentialism, an unwillingness to commit, the discovery of self, finding, then losing, love, and time as a dictator—one that can be overcome if one knows where to look, and the search for El Dorado.


I would recommend this carpentisr to anyone wanting to be well read in Latin American literature. Leave a Reply Cancel reply Enter your comment here Feb 25, Nora Perlman rated it it was ok. Reading After Dark Trumping sleep one book at a time.

There were ceaseless, analogous segues in place of dialogu Advanced vocabulary overflows with existentialism and anthropological wisdom. On a platform covered with old, mildewed velvets stood the coffin, still ringing with hammer blows, studded with heavy, silver-headed nails, just come from the Carpenter, who stfps erred in his measurements of a corpse, for his photographic memory preserved the dimensions of all the town’s living inhabitants.

The words are laboured. One felt the presence of rampant fauna, of the primeval slime, of the green fermentation beneath the dark waters, which gave off a sour reek like a mud of vinegar and carrion, over whose oily surface moved insects made to walk on the water: I couldn’t help but think he was just showing off.

Alejo Carpentier, The Lost Steps, Reading Guide #3, FL

It was the feeling and connection and the writing that mattered. The story follows a European man, a failed musician, who journeys into the South American jungle on an anthropological mission in what becomes a quest for his own recovered history — his own authenticity. It was a struggle to say the least. A small party continues up river in canoes. You can see his pitfalls dteps before they come, and perhaps he can too, but he is so good at convincing carpentie and you, piling illusion atop illusion.

What I really found attractive about him was that he was so Apr 22, Rita rated it really liked it.


The Lost Steps

His prose is savage and elegant, the worlds he creates as convincing as they are fantastic. Todo se entrelaza para darle comienzo al origen, al carpehtier del hombre y a su encuentro consigo mismo. You are commenting using your Twitter account. He meets Yannes who tells him that Rosario has married Marcos and is pregnant. Carpentier masterfully concocts the world of the South American jungle, absolutely magical in comparison to the undisclosed European city from which his character commences his quest, and — this is what impressed me most — thr narrator’s longing for self-realization and for a return to simplicity is immensely compelling.

My basic feeling is that our current pattern of development in the West is a disaster, that it is creating a living environment of astonishing ugliness and sterility, and that this model is being presenting to the rest of the world as the only reasonable goal for progress; and that modern industrial civilization needs to rediscover some of the virtues of pre-industrial societies if it is to become a good place for people again. I know, I know, the washwoman may be quite happy about not pounding those clothes on a rock anymore, but something true remains after the obvious objections.

Maybe people writing prose out of an essentially Christian imagination have a mindset that I just cannot connect with. The weapon that assists women from partner to marry is the right to leave at any time, leave him alone, having no means of enforcing any rights.