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What would happen if a woman had two husbands? According to customs, for a man to have two husbands is ok and what about a woman. Most definitely it would be a comic story since everyone would want to know how she handles the two relationships. Will she be caught by the husbands or how does she handle the two husbands. What time does she visit the two husbands? Do the two husbands know about the whole story? These are some of the questions people are expected to ask themselves when such an incident happens. Additionally, people expect to have a romantic tale or a comedy in such a story. Therefore, this paper tries to examine whether the story 'Dona Flor and her two husbands' contains comic relief or not.
The story 'Dona Flor and her two husbands' is about a woman who had two husbands. The first husband Vadinho was an irresponsible husband who was always spent money on drinking. However, he was always good in bed as Dona Flor could detest that. However, one day coming back from a festival he fell down and died. Flor’s friends thought this was an opportunity for her to get a decent man that she deserved so that she could forget Vadinho. They think that Flor is not supposed to mourn due to Vadinho death because he was a good for nothing husband. Even Aunt Lita, who was so kind, and finding excuses for Vadinho's carrying-on, has said to her more than once; "its an ill wind that blows nobody good daughter. What if you brought a child that took after Vadinho, so irresponsible?" (Amado, 1977, p 146)What they do not know is that Vadinho was an excellent lover. Flor meets her second husband Teodoro who is the complete opposite of Vadinho. In addition, he is not good in bed. Therefore, Flor wishes that Vadinho was there to make love to her. He finally comes, but nobody could see him, but her. The story ends when all of them are in bed (Amado, 1977).
The big question remains, was the story comical or not? The story is more of a romantic tale than a comedy. This is because the plot or the story line tells of a relationship triangle between Flor and the two husbands. The author has failed to apply comic means in the story. For instance, the cover of the book contains two men on the sides and a woman in the middle, and they are holding each other. The first idea a person gets of the book is a romantic tale and not a comic book (Amado, 1977). This means that the comic techniques have not been applied in the images in the cover of the book.
When reading a book that has comic techniques one is supposed to laugh or at least have that happy mood. In the case of this story, a reader does not have that comic relief when reading the book instead the reader gets hooked up in the story. A reader gets to feel the reality of the story. For example, when Flor meets Teodoro, the reader feels happy for her because she deserves better than Vadinho and she has finally gets it. Moreover, he was honest. "Dr. Teodoro was not a man who lied, but neither did he want to offend anyone, least of all donor flows mother" (Amado, 1977, p 364). This situation makes the leaders love Teodoro instead of laughing with comical relief. There is no place in the book where the reader has a chance to laugh. This shows that the author of the book has not used any comic techniques but has used romantic techniques to explain the story.
When writing comedy it should not be forced. It should be easier, and the reader should understand the joke quickly. When the authors of comedy write, they try to make the book as funny as possible. Making it easy for the readers to understand the author’s intent is one of the techniques that the author uses. In this case, it is not easy to get any joke on the story because it is about a romantic tale of Flor and her two husbands. "Whether normal males without problems, like Dr. Teodoro, or old satyrs, navel-lickers, high-voltage fellatio performers, leaving them all satisfied and happy" (Amado, 1977, p 309). The author makes it difficult for the readers to get the joke. By the time the reader gets the joke it is not funny anymore because he or she was tired in figuring out whether it was funny.
The other technique of comedy is the truth of the story. When one reads a story and finds out that it was something that happened before he or she tends to laugh. This shows that there has been the creation of humor to the story by the author. Thinking about the story of Flor there is a lot of truth in it but the kind of reality is not funny (Amado, 1977). What a reader yarns for in this story is closure and not humor. This shows that the story is more of a romantic tale and not a comedy because a reader does not get the comic relief.
Insults and sarcasm are some of the comic techniques used by the different authors to show humor in a story. For instance, in most comedies people hull insults but in a more comical way so that the reader can laugh. Additionally, they use sarcasm in these stories in a more comical way to show for the readers to find humor in the story. The story of Flor, the author has not used insults or sarcasm. "Dr. Teodoro repeated his conversation with the Banker to Donor Flor, omitting the dirty words and lunkhead." (Amado, 1977, p 454). This means that the readers are having it hard in trying to get the humor or there is no humor at all. For this fact, the story is not a comedy but more of a love triangle.
Taking into consideration the modern way of life the story can apply to the real life. In today's world love has changed entirely. In the olden days, people used to practice monogamy. Women were devoted and used to love their husbands unconditionally. Things like sex never counted that much. However, in the current world sex matters a lot. Women need sexual satisfaction. In this case, they will love a man who satisfies them sexually even if she is married. This is why people find women having two men where one is made to be a secret. Additionally, love has utterly changed because women are basing their love on sexual satisfaction.
In this case, Flor’s story is explaining what happens in most women relationships. For example, Flor loves Vadinho because he used to satisfy her in bed and yet Vadinho was an irresponsible man who used to spend all the money drinking. That is why she is mourning for the death of Vadinho. After finding another man, Teodoro, she tries to make the best out of it but only to find out that Teodoro is not good in bed (Amado, 1977). For this reason, she starts to think of Vadinho and wishes that he was there to satisfy her. On the blues, she appears and tells him that he is the only one who can satisfy her. This love triangle appears in the current world, and it is common in both men and women.
In addition, the author philosophy that is poised in the story is that nobody is perfect. Moreover, the author has added another philosophy in the story where everybody has his or her strengths. For instance, Vadinho was not perfect because he was always irresponsible. On the other hand, he had strength in bed. In the case of Teodoro, he was a charmer and treated Flor nicely (Amado, 1977). However, he was extremely weak in bed and could never meet the standards of Vadinho. For this reason, it can be stated that the philosophies of the story are true.
The last philosophy the author has posed in the story is about those men who are poor in treating their men who are excellent is satisfying a woman nicely. In the story of Flor, Teodoro is extremely good in taking care of Flor but he is awfully poor in satisfying her. On the other hand, Vadinho does not treat Flor well. He is irresponsible and spends all the money on drinking and coming home late. He does not care much about Flor’s welfare. On the contrary, he is capable of satisfying Flor. "Two gestures of Vadinho, the two equally tender and imperious market the beginning and end of that romantic evening Flor" (Amado, 1977, p 208). In this case, Dona Flor was aware that good nights she had with Vadinho were no more since Teodoro could not do the same. This shows that the men who are irresponsible are good in bed, and men that are responsible are poor in bed (Amado, 1977).
In the story 'Dona Flor and her two husbands' the author has not used comic techniques to write it. The author has only used romance to tell the story. If the reader could follow the story he/she would see it more of a romantic tale than a comedy. Additionally, there is nowhere in the story the reader could laugh and find humor. However, the story could be compared to the real life situation that is being lived by people currently. Additionally, the philosophies posed by the author may be true to current life situation.