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Cover of the first edition, financed by Alencar himself
|Author||José de Alencar|
|Original title||O Guarani: Romance Brasileiro|
|Translator||James W. Hawes|
Published in English
|Media type||Serial (hardcover and paperback)|
The Guarani: Brazilian Novel (Portuguese: O Guarani: Romance Brasileiro) is a 1857 Brazilian novel written by José de Alencar. It was first serialized in the newspaper Diário do Rio de Janeiro, but due to its enormous success Alencar decided to compile his writing in a volume. A plausible explanation for this success might be in the fact that novel spoke of freedom and independence, arguing for a nativeness that could be found in tropical Nature and in the indigenous people of Brazil.
Years later the novel was turned into an opera performed in Italian and called Il Guarany (1870), by Carlos Gomes, among other places it was presented in Milan and New York (it is a known fact that the author did not appreciate the final result). The Guarani is regarded a foundational text of Brazilian Romanticism, but it gained international projection by being translated into Spanish, German (Der Guarany, Brasilianischer Roman, Maximillian Emerich, 1876) and English (The Guarany, Brazilian novel, James W. Hawes, 1893).
The novel is still widely read nowadays, especially at Brazilian schools as an introduction to novel reading, but also by anyone who enjoys a thrilling adventure story. Literary criticism has tended to link The Guarani to the works of Fenimore Cooper, Chateaubriand and the noble savage from the Rousseauian tradition. However, this interpretation of the novel has become outdated as recent academic works show also how dark, sexual, gothic and lyrical (over narrative, unlike the Fenimore Cooper model) the novel is.
The Guarani is set back in 1604, a period when Portugal and its colonies submitted to Spanish dominion due to a lack of heirs to ascend to the throne. Alencar takes advantage of this dynastic complication to resurrect the historical figure of Dom Antônio de Mariz, one of the founders of the city of Rio de Janeiro and a pioneer settler. This historical (factual) background, which orients the novel throughout, is set in the first two chapters; then fantasy, both violent and erotic, starts to prevail.
D. Antônio establishes himself in a deserted inland region, a few days’ travel from the seaside city of Rio. The land was granted to him through his services to the Portuguese crown, whose legitimacy the nobleman now distrusts. To be politically independent (if not economically) and keep to the Portuguese codes of honour, he builds a castle-like house to shelter his family in Brazilian soil where he lives like a feudal lord with his family and retainers.
His family consists of his severe wife D. Lauriana, his angelic fair, blue-eyed daughter Cecília, his dandyish son D. Diogo and the "niece" Isabel, a cabocla who is in fact his illegitimate daughter by an Indian woman. Other people are also attached to his household, a few loyal servants, forty adventurers/mercenaries kept for protection, the young nobleman Álvaro de Sá, an appropriate suitor for his lawful daughter Cecília, and Peri, an Indian of the Guaraní people, who once saved Cecy’s life (as the romantic/romanticised Indian endearingly calls Cecília) and who has since deserted his tribe and family. Peri is the hero who gives title to the book, he is treated as a friend by D. Antônio and Ceci and as a nuisance by Mrs. Mariz and Isabel. The life of the characters is altered by the arrival of the adventurer Loredano (former friar Angelo di Lucca) who insinuates himself into the house and soon starts subverting the other vassals, planning to kidnap Cecília and scheming against the house of Mariz; along with the accidental murder of an Aimoré Indian woman by D. Diogo.
The Guarani is the Brazilian novel with the largest number of adaptation for comics. The first adaptation of the comic book was published in 1938, made by Francisco Acquarone for newspaper "Correio Universal. In 1948, it was the turn of the haitian André LeBlanc for Edição Maravilhosa #24 of Ebal, the comic book initially published novels from global literature originally published in Classic Comics and Classics Illustrated", Le Blanc adapt other works by the author: Iracema (scripted by his wife) and the O Tronco do Ipê, the same year the Portuguese illustrator Jayme Cortez adapting the novel to the format of comic strips published in the Diário da Noite, in the 50s it was the turn of the comic writer Gedeone Malagola, he also adapt Iracema and Ubirajara, all for the publisher Vida Doméstica. In the 1970s it was adapted by Edumundo Rodrigues, Rodrigues, also illustrated a new version of the novel by José Alberto Lima. In 2009, the brothers Walter and Eduardo Vetillo publish an adaptation by Editora Cortez, the same year the publisher Editora Ática an adaptation by Ivan Jaf (script) and Luiz Ge (art), In 2012, Editora Scipione (a publisher of the "Grupo Abril", which also is part of the Editora Ática), publishes an adaptation of the opera of Carlos Gomes, scripted by Rosana Rios, with drawings by Juliano Oliveira, inks by Sam Hart.
In the short story "The Last of the Guaranys" by Brazilian writers Octavio Aragão and Carlos Orsi, published in the anthologies The Worlds of Philip José Farmer 3: Portraits of the Trickster (Michael Croteau, ed., Meteor House, 2012) and Tales of the Wold Newton Universe (Win Scott Eckert and Christopher Paul Carey, eds., Titan Books, 2013), Peri is one of the identities adopted by time traveler John Gribardsun (meant to be Edgar Rice Burroughs's Tarzan) in Time's Last Gift, a novel by Philip José Farmer in his Wold Newton family series.
- Cirne, Moacy (January 24, 2011) Quadrinhos - Nos braços de Peri. Revista de História da Biblioteca Nacional.
- Junior, Gonçalo, A guerra dos gibis: a formação do mercado editorial brasileiro e a censura aos quadrinhos, 1933-1964, Companhia das Letras, 2004. ISBN 9788535905823
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- Cirne, Moacy Literatura em quadrinhos no Brasil: acervo da Biblioteca Nacional. [S.l.]: Nova Fronteira, 2002. 9788520914960
- Fernando Lemos, Rui Moreira Leite, Waldomiro Vergueiro e Fabio Moraes. A missão portuguesa: rotas entrecruzadas. [S.l.]: Editora UNESP, 2002. 205 e 206 p. ISBN 9788571394612
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- Bira Dantas (June 14, 2010)Entrevista: Walter Vetillo. Bigorna.net
- Iara Tatiana Bonin and Daniela Ripoll (January/April, 2011). Universidade Estadual de Maringá / Revista Teoria e Prática da Educação
- Adilson Thieghi (October 21, 2009).O Guarani. HQManiacs
- Carlos Costa (May 10, 2012). Editora Scipione lança adaptação de O Guarani. HQManiacs
- "The Last of the Guaranys". Internet Speculative Fiction Database. Retrieved 30 October 2013.
- Dennis E. power. "Triple Tarzan - Tangle or A few incidences of time travel in the Wold Newton Universe". PJFarmer.com.
- Carey, Christopher Paul. "Tales of the Wold Newton Universe, Part 2 of 4". Black Gate. Retrieved 30 October 2013.