"Don Quijote" y "La vida es sueno": La voluntad y la realizacion del protagonista. (Spanish text);
Martinez, Adam G.
Castaneda, James A.
Master of Arts
A comparison of Don Quijote de la Mancha by Miguel de Cervantes and La vida es sueno by Calderon de la Barca highlights a long tradition of social, religious, and political themes which preoccupied early 17th century Spain. Although one is a novel and the other a play, both works represent in their respective protagonists a gradual awareness, understanding and maturation of the human will in its quest to find meaning and freedom in life. Though one is replete with theological implications, both are essentially philosophical. Both protagonists begin with disadvantages: Don Quijote has a distorted view of reality while Segismundo has been isolated from the world since birth. Yet, as they confront reality, the protagonists overcome their circumstances and gradually unfold a deepened understanding and a meaningful fulfillment of the true human capacity to exert the will and thus determine a life's outcome.
Romance literature; Modern literature