The Night Face Up Julio Cortazar

Posted: November 27th, 2013

The Night Face Up Julio Cortazar


The response to Julio Cortazar’s short story “The Night Face Up” is well informed of the happenings in the story. The reader shows his comprehension of the story by giving a summative but clear beginning, plot and ending clearly. The response is clear in giving a detailed summary of the plot of the story. It narrates on how the narrator crashes with his motorbike marking the beginning of his ordeal with the Aztec warriors. The respondent is also keen to notice the humor in the instance where the neighboring patients say that he could fall from his bed from his constant shaking yet no one seems to wake up the poor man.

The assumption that the man was sacrificed is a plausible one as there are instances in the story indicative of this. The first is the one pointed out in the response of the instance where the man lay in the altar facing upwards and having closed his eyes. The story does not give any detail of struggle indicating that the man was already dead. The belief by the priests that men were supposed to be sacrificed to the gods further indicates that the man had been sacrificed. This shows that the response was clearly researched.

1          The man drifted in out of his dream due to the constant attending on his wounds by the nurses and doctors on his wounds. During times in his dream when he faced imminent danger, the man usually drifted off his sleep and woke up. While he was calm in the hospital bed, he would drift back into sleep and continue with the same dream. These alternating instances caused him to drift in and out of his dream.

2          All throughout his dream, he was trying to save his dear life by attempting to escape from the warriors who were hunting him and his friends for a sacrifice. This he did not manage because the warriors later caught up with him and captured him. Later on as he is escorted to the altar, he tries to close his eyes so that he can float back into reality several times without success.

3          The dream ends in suspense where narrator is dragged and left on the altar. He sees the priest approach him with a stone knife ready to slit his chest. His attempts to wake up are fruitless. We later learn of the situation on the hospital thus do not have a clear ending to his dream.

“Axolotl” by Julio Cortazar


The response to “Axolotl” by Julio Cortazar is somehow vague as it does not give conclusive answers to some of the concerns raised when reading the story. Although the person claims to have read the story a couple of times, his response shows that he is yet to comprehend what the story is all about. The individual explains that his first judgment regarding the narrator’s enthusiasm with the Axolotls was erred. The person explains that the narrator is not obsessed with the axolotls because he has nothing better to do yet he does not specify on why he is fascinated but just admits that he was unable to comprehend this.

The individual continues to state that he is baffled by the way; the narrator at times describes himself as an axolotl. The person explains that he is rather confused on the perspective that the story is narrated from. In the response, he first states that he thought the story was being told from an Axolotls point of view. This he later deems as an implausible argument because it fails to make any sense. The inconclusiveness nature of the response thus renders it extraneous, as it cannot be used for further research.

1.         What fascinated the man about Axolotls was the way he connected with them the moment he visited the aquarium. The narrator describes that he felt linked to the animals on the very first few minutes of eye contact with them. The linkage was so strong that the narrator felt as if he and the Axolotls were being pulled together. He was also fascinated by the gentle quietness exhibited by the Axolotls. This quietness enabled him to understand how they were able to transcend the barriers of space and time with an indifferent immobility.

2.         The narrator believed the Axolotls were suffering because they were slaves of their bodies even thought they were aware of this. Their indifferent faces he believed were like the Aztec masks and were meant to conceal the suffering that the Axolotls were going through. He saw the tank where they lived as a liquid where they were being tortured.

3.         The narrator thought and believed that he was an axolotl because he had grown so much fond of them and thus had started identifying with the creatures. He compared the suffering of the Axolotls with his own and felt that he could identify with them.


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