Discussion Question

In one of the many striking confessions made by Rodrigo S.M. in Clarice Lispector’s The Hour of the Star”, he states: “I did not invent this girl. She forced her being upon me.” (29). What is it that “forces” itself upon the narrator? What is so disturbing about Macabea that it sends the narrator into this state of melodramatic frenzy?

In order to answer this question, you need to explore and think about Macabea’s character, as well as the plot of the novel—the repeated statements as to the “insignificance” of a person like Macabea, her lack of sense of self, her fascination with Radio Clock and magazines [“Macabea only had to smell raw meat in order to convince herself that she had eaten.” (53)], and even the irony of her destiny—Madame Carlota sees a foreigner in her future, and she is indeed run over by a foreign car.

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