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Martin Fierro

Almost all of us read Martín Fierro. The problem is, almost all of us read it wrong.

Art and Literature
gaucho-martín fierro

Almost all of us read   Martín Fierro  . The problem is, almost all of us read it wrong. In fact, I'm not doing the  cancher : the first time I read it  well  (I ask you please understand what that word means in this context: I mean to have in this context tells the political and social context in which it was written, published and read) was in the faculty. And perhaps that is the source of the problem: I dare to risk that 90% of those who read it did it in secondary school, without desire, little incentive, with a literature teacher half jaded and isolating it from any context. No one, or at least very few, can read a book of such a magnitude well, less at fifteen years old.

 The story of Fierro 

Much was said that if instead of Martín Fierro the national book was  Facundo , the story would be another. I agree. To what I add: a much worse one.  Fierro is a gaucho who falls into a razzia by gaucho, that is, because he is neither aristocrat nor bourgeois.  He is forced to fight against the Indians in a border fortin in inhumane conditions, until he finally gets a license. When he returned to his ranch, his wife and children are gone. He doesn't know if they died, abandoned him or if they were kidnapped. Crazy of sadness, he becomes a deserter. On the escape, he crosses with a departure of state soldiers who want to apprehend him to send him back to the front, now not only by gaucho but by  gaucho  and  deserter  . In the middle he killed one who attacked him in a pulpery, it's true, but the two were drunk, the dead could have been anyone and the quilombo tore it off the other.

The moment he sees the game approaching, Fierro decides he prefers to die rather than return to the hell of the fort without food or ammunition. So he decides to put his body in front of the Indians: he faces them. When he sees the game coming, Fierro decides that he prefers to die to return to the hell of the fort without food or ammunition putting his body in front of the Indians, he faces them. Seeing his bravery, one of the members of the game, the famous Cruz, stands on his side. Between the two they manage to zafar and decide to go into exile, cross the border of “civilization” and go to live with the Indians. That's where the first part ends.

 The beauty of national epic poetry 

For most, what left our great epic poetry is the advice of Old Vizcacha (The  brothers  be united, etc.). Few remember that it is a book that talks about how unjust and cruel the state can become, especially with the less favored classes, and the untenable situation in which they put them in and then have arguments of punishment. But what is really impressive is the poetry with which he says it. And Hernandez's courage to have published it when he published it. I leave some stanzas, which I think are the most beautiful. I hope it makes them want to read the whole thing.

The law is a spider web

— In my inorance it is enliqued.

Do not be afraid of the rich man;

he who commands never the subject;

For the big bug beast

and only the boys do.

It is the law as rain:


can never be a couple;


who endures it complains,

But the matter is simple:

The law is like the knife:


does not command the one who handles it.

They often call him a sword


And the name is good for him;

those who rule it see

where they should give the pit:

He who is below

and cut off without seeing whom.

Publication Date: 20/04/2018

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We suggest you continue reading the following notes:

3-clásicos-de-la-literatura-gauchesca 3 classics of gauchesca literature
November 10: Writer, poet, journalist and legislator José Hernández is remembered.



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By: Homero Fleitas Gallagher 10 November, 2018

Impresionante. La historia viva de la humanidad. No la inventó Hernández, ya Salomón aplicaba, según la Biblia, su propio criterio para dar "justicia" a quienes integraban su pueblo. Y si vamos más hacia el inicio del libro sagrado, cuando Caín mata a Abel, la "justicia" de Dios, solo le alcanzó para ser expulsado del paraíso.. Muy liviano castigo para un asesino.

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