The story is characteristic of her work in that it presents a poetically rendered reality and the theme of a woman's isolated and marginalized existence in search of love, communication, and understanding. The protagonist's tale is a recollection during a concert of her past life. Her inner sanctum is invaded, however, when the tree is cut down. Debicki has asserted that the story's complex structure keeps Bombal from this danger. By means of a delicate interweaving of the present and the past, as well as the protagonist's outer and inner realities, Bombal communicates in a concise and vivid manner a woman's existentialist plight.
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At the University of Paris she studied literature and philosophy. There, she was part of a different cultural and artistic panorama, place where she gained interest in literature and of course, in writing novels. After finishing her university studies she came back to Chile, reuniting with his mother and sisters again. She also studied violin with the music teacher Jacques Thibaud and drama with Charles Dolan. In she published one of her most famous and most important novels in Chilean literature , La Amortajada, which earned her the Premio de la Novela de la Municipalidad de Santiago Novel prize of Santiago's Municipality.
During their marriage, Bombal began to suffer from depression, and attempted suicide. In she married the homosexual painter Jorge Larco, forming with him a marriage blanche. In she returned to Chile due to the beginning of a divorce trial. When he came out, she shot him three times in the arm. She went to trial; however, Eulogio exempted her from all guilt, for which the judge acquitted her. Years later, on Maria's own words, she said that he ruined her life, however, she never forgot him.
Later on, she moved to United States , where she married the French count, Rafael de Saint Phall, whom she had a daughter with, called Brigitte.
She lived there until In her final days, which she spent in Chile, Bombal developed an alcohol abuse. This drinking problem forced her to repeatedly visit the hospital for a liver disease. She remained in Chile until , dying the same year on May 6 in Santiago, victim of a huge gastrointestinal bleeding. In every novel and story written by Maria, there is a strong distinction between how women and men think and behave.
We can see this clearly, when in most of her works, women and men characters are separated by a huge gender gap and the relationships between these characters are always troubled or flawed. For Bombal, femininity is a symbol of uniqueness, more related to nature, emotions and intuition, very different from how masculinity is represented, where men are described as stronger and wiser, at the moment of facing problems.
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. The Oxford book of Latin American short stories. Knapp, Bettina L. Multicultural writers from antiquity to a bio-bibliographical sourcebook. Westport, Connecticut: Greenwood Press. Memoria Chilena. Retrieved 28 June La Otra Voz in Spanish. Namespaces Article Talk.
The Tree (El árbol) by María Luisa Bombal, 1941
María Luisa Bombal