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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Any first person account will be unreliable, after all, what we are getting is the person’s interpretation.

Doesn’t she understand she’s too decadently European to be of service any longer to our brave, self-exploring protagonist? He died in Paris in and was buried in Havana. To question the reliability of the narrator is to question the reliability of history itself, whose account are we getting? To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up. An erudite yet absorbing adventure story.

He needs to be Big News, a Household Word, he should enjoy a reputation commensurate with his genius.

The Lost Steps — University of Minnesota Press

Together with his mistress Mouche and carpentoer he watches a showing of a commercially sponsored film for which he has composed the soundtrack. The principal narrator here is a guy married to a stage actress who accepts a commission to go to a jungle somewhere in South America and get a primitive musical instrument. Por esto, el viaje a la selva le da libertad, conciencia y creatividad. The older I get the more I notice that the works I value are largely a matter of personal affinity with the authors — whether their preoccupations and methods line up with mine, either in obvious or more mysterious ways.


A composer, fleeing loat empty existence in New York City, takes a journey with his mistress to one of the few remaining areas of the world not yet touched by civilization-the upper reaches of a great South American river.

The narrator is also either a musicologist or a composer or bothand so much of his narration unfolds in discourses with which he is most familiar and comfortable.

Buy the book at Amazon UK. At the beginning this book is a little bit confusing. His wife Ruth is pregnant.

Carpentier answers this question in the negative, and I am beginning to think he might be right. El toque de la novela es, sin duda, la capacidad del alemo y su manejo del lenguaje. But he fails to find the entrance to the hidden tributary because it is submerged in the flooded river.

The Lost Steps

There is a thunderstorm that threatens to capsize the canoes. The narrator gets an assignment to go to an unnamed country in South America to collect some traditional musical instruments. I personally did not enjoy The Lost Steps. carpeniter

Lists with This Book. It was everywhere, diligent, looking after all the details, making the necessary arrangements, placing the mourners, lighting the candles, taking pains to see that the whole town should find place in the vast rooms with deep window seats and broad doorways, the better to contemplate its work. I have the same feeling when I read Graham Greene. Time is essential to the novel. I read this book in Spanish.

Getting married is to fall under laws made by the men and not women. I also found fault with virtually all of Carpentier’s character Los Pasos Perdidos, while clearly an important work — as evidenced by almost every review on this page — was very difficult for me to get through. Dec 23, Tony rated it liked it Shelves: I enjoy a lot the part went Rosario I read this book in Spanish. Surrounded by primitive life and customs, he feels as if he has travelled back in time to the medieval age.


And this, of the jungle: It therefore becomes an essentially timeless metonymy of Latin America. It was a struggle to say the least.

He also drenches his works in references to the two academic disciplines in which he was formally educated — architecture and music — as well as the general embedding of events into their historical and political context.

The main hero sees himself as Sisyphus futilely rolling the huge boulder of his fruitless responsibilities from day to day and he desperately wishes to flee this fate… …I asked myself whether, in bygone days, men had longed for bygone days as I, this summer morning, longed for certain ways of life that man had lost forever. Todo se entrelaza para darle comienzo al origen, al ser del hombre y a su encuentro consigo mismo.

His awareness that such a place exists is the best he is able to do. Nevertheless, dawn in the jungle always renews the intimate, the atavic rejoicing, carried in the blood stream, of ancestors who, for thousands of years, saw in each dawn the end of their nocturnal fears, the retreat of the roars, the scattering of the shadows, the confounding of the ghosts, the confining of evil within its bounds.

Apr 02, Barbara rated it it was amazing Shelves: Now, I don’t want to completely discount this book.