magical realism

Magical realism, magic realism, or marvelous realism is literature, painting, and film that, while encompassing a range of subtly different concepts, share in common an acceptance of magic in the rational world. Of the three terms, Magical realism is the most commonly used and refers to literature in particular that portrays magical or unreal elements as a natural part in an otherwise realistic or mundane environment. The terms are broadly descriptive rather than critically rigorous. Matthew Strecher defines magic realism as “what happens when a highly detailed, realistic setting is invaded by something too strange to believe.” Many writers are categorized as “magical realists,” which confuses what the term really means and how wide its definition is. Magical realism is often associated with Latin American literature, particularly authors including Gabriel García Márquez and Isabel Allende.