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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The minor characters are never allowed to bloom. A classic example of magic realism and a principal influence on later works in this genre. There is a thunderstorm that threatens to capsize the canoes. He finds the culture of New York frivolous and decadent.

Geography is centrally important to the novel, because its principal theme is the tension between European-based and Latin-American culture.

But the discussion we had at the Book Club was among the best. Carpentier in Depth Spanish video documentary and interview with Carpentier What I really found attractive about him was that he was so Sorry, your blog cannot share posts by email. Just thought I’d let you know.

The Occasional Review: The Lost Steps, by Alejo Carpentier

sgeps Although my first reading did not prove to be entirely enjoyable, this is a book I’d like to give another go in a few years. Refresh and try again. This journey through space is also a journey through time — the protagonist travels as if he goes through the epochs until carpenhier arrives to the fountainhead of humankind, pristine garden of Genesis.

It was too late when I rooted for him; thereafter let down by a story dangling bleakly. He takes his mistress, Mouche, along. A listen about this book in a latinoamerica apejo class and I began to read it because the music story. While on his journey he grows bored with his mistress and takes a native woman as lover.

This isn’t a perfect book – the characters tend to be a little stiffly drawn and more romanticized than real, but the prose, while dense, is beautiful.


All of his interpretations are shaped by his own history, which involves civilization and extensive knowledge of Western art and mythology. See 1 question about The Lost Steps….

Alejo undeniably possessed astute observational gifts.

Sep 16, Joselito Honestly and Brilliantly rated it liked it. But other times, when my attention was flagging after a long day, I could hardly concentrate on the complex workings of what he was saying. The story follows a European man, a failed musician, who journeys into the South American jungle alfjo an anthropological mission in what becomes a carpengier for his own recovered history — his own authenticity. Take a look around and grab the RSS feed to stay updated.

The more women he penetrates, the deeper he thf his own, unique self. These were the days for the accumulation of humus, the rotting and decay of the fallen leaves, in keeping with the law decreeing that all generation shall take place in the neighborhood of excretion, that organs of generation shall be intertwined with those of urination, and that all that is born shall come into the world enveloped in mucus, serum, and blood–just as out eteps manure comes the purity of the asparagus and the green hte mint.

A book full of riches—stylistic, sensory, visual. Reminded of it today seeing the film Embrace of the Serpent, set in that same mysterious inhospitable all engulfing world – the Amazon jungle.

He is not a likable person: Though my opinion of the novel essentially remained the same, I feel that I was able to gain further appreciation for it as a truly valuable work in the Latin American canon.

I wouldn’t have enjoyed the direct route as much as the one provided here, with all the views carpentieg vistas of his mind. He has shed a legitimate wife in New Aleuo, taken with him on the journey his Bohemian mistress, then ditched her in favour of a native replacement because she could not adapt to conditions on the expedition.

The narrator is aloof and abstruse throughout the first third of the novel. It has a short life story around 6 month. He meets Yannes who tells him that Rosario has married Marcos and is pregnant.

The Lost Steps by Alejo Carpentier

Doesn’t she understand she’s too decadently European to be of service any longer to our brave, self-exploring protagonist? But on arriving in Latin America he feels re-united with his native language, which is Spanish.


Carpentier’s unique writing style is something to be respected, however, I wouldn’t say I have a preference for it.

The narrator thinks he can go back to complete the task of academic research he has undertaken as a matter of honour then return to the native experience he has discovered. The narrator’s voice began to grate on me halfway through.

He finds the forest primeval, life shorn to its most elemental, and experiences something of a spiritual reawakening. Such a lack of credibility would seem like a fatal flaw for a novel, but for whatever reason it is not — for me, at least.

The Lost Steps

His novels — including The Lost Steps — are packed with the concrete nouns of indigenous cultural phenomena — the geography, the architecture, the plant life, music, food, and social customs of Southern America and the Caribbean. They reach horse-rearing lands, and then visit the City of Ruins. Lists with This Book.

Except for one scene where mosquitoes sort of formed a beautiful kaleidoscope of colors, and his mistress being stricken with malaria, no mention is made of the horrors of mosquito bites. I’m hoping to launch a reading-focused blog soon The Lost Steps is our first book to tackle and I plan to direct readers to your site if they seek a different prospective.

View all 3 comments. The Lost Steps describes his search, his adventures, and the remarkable decision he makes in a village that seems to be truly outside history. Yet as he begins to leave his present, his life as he has known it and drives closer to the unknown jungles of South America, he becomes eminently more likable.

Besides the difficulties of reading a narrative told by someone who is not likable, the narrator references entire symphonies as a music professor might.