A Manual for Manuel Summary
Julio Cortázar

Everything you need to understand or teach A Manual for Manuel by Julio Cortázar.

  • A Manual for Manuel Summary & Study Guide

A Manual for Manuel Summary

A Manual for Manuel portrays reality from two distinct perspectives or levels. On the one level it presents the objective reality of Latin America. This is done by repeated inclusion of actual newspaper clippings about political atrocities. On the second level it presents an absurd adventure, referred to as the Joda (which, according to Cortazar, means messing around), in which a group of political idealists attempt to kidnap an important diplomat. The idea of abducting a prominent official in order to hold him as hostage in exchange for the release of political prisoners is founded on historical reality. What is absurd is the manner in which the abduction takes place. It is a game. As in most games, there are rules and procedures to be followed.

As part of the Joda's game plan the group invents an absurd strategy for obtaining counterfeit funds. A turquoise penguin is donated...

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A Manual for Manuel Short Guide