The Labyrinth of Solitude by Octavio Paz

Critical analysis of author’s attempt to describe the Mexican character & spirit of Mexico.

This study will provide an analysis of Octavio Paz’s The Labyrinth of Solitude, focusing on Paz’ attempt to describe the character of the Mexican and Mexico. Paz is a poet and an imaginative thinker, rather than an abstract sociologist or scientist relying on statistics. Therefore, his description of the Mexican character is marked by images and vivid, sometimes troubling, speculations, rather than dry abstractions. In comparing the Mexican character to that of the American, for example, the author writes that This Mexicanism -delight in decorations, carelessness and pomp, negligence, passion and reserve/*-floats in the air (13). The solitude of the title of the book is a state which humanity finds itself in as a result of the collapse of universal order (Paz 26). The world seems to be more and more complicated and mysterious. But human beings…

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