Among other themes, Gabriel Garcia Marquez explores the potential solitude of sexuality in his novel, One Hundred Years of Solitude. Each of Marquez’s characters, mainly members of the Buendia family, has a similar manner of expressing his or her sexuality, which is often entwined with abuse and incest. Much of the characters’ sexuality and lack of interpersonal love arises from, and contributes to family and individual solitude, the lack of interpersonal connectedness, and individual aloneness. Sexual exploitation displays itself through sexual repression, unrestrained sexual expression as well as more apparent forms of abuse. The family’s sexuality leads to and arises from their seclusion.
Sexual repression and denial cause the initial solitude and detachment in the Buendia family, both between family members and between the family and the rest of society. Ursula Buendia’s manipulative refusal to consummate her marriage with her husband and cousin, Jose Arcadio Buendia, (Marquez 21) and its resultant shame, secrecy and mockery from the outside, drives the couple into geographical and social solitude. After a year of Ursula’s continued denial to make love to her husband, Prudencio Aguilar openly insults Jose Arcadio Buendia’s manhood, indicating the husband’s impotency (Marquez 21). Jose Arcadio Buendia kills him in a “traditional gesture of offended sexual honour” (Minta, 149) and then rapes his wife, forcing himself and her out of sexual seclusion. Although, after this act their sexual seclusion ends, the murder drives the couple into the physical separation from their world. They move to a “land that no one had promised them … far … away from the last Indians” (Marquez 24) resulting in complete isolation from civilization.
While Ursula’s sexual denial produced the geographical and social solitude, the even stricter sexual repression by Fernanda del Carpio’s produces a long lasting effect of sexual solitude among her family...