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I’ve been looking at Magical Realism and how to write it. It is so much deeper than I realized. For me, it all started when I watched Bright. It was full of elves, orcs, fairies, and magic. I thought the movie was an example of Magical Realism, but I was wrong.
Yes there was magic, But Magical Realism is deeper.
Yes, discrimination was at the core of it, but this movie fell in to the fantasy category because there was too many magical elements and little real-world setting.
[It] is a style of fiction that paints a realistic view of the modern world while also adding magical elements. It is sometimes called fabulism, in reference to the conventions of fables, myths, and allegory. “Magical realism”, perhaps the most common term, often refers to fiction and literature in particular,:1–5 with magic or the supernatural presented in an otherwise real-world or mundane setting. It is considered a subgenre of fantasy.
The essence of Magic Realism:
Magical Realism was originally rooted in Latin America religion, legends and myths. Stories that passed from generation to generation leaving a wonderful sense of family history and the magic of hope. It discussed what couldn’t be openly discussed by an oppressed society. And Mr Gabriel García Márquez was awarded the Nobel Prize for Literature in 1982 for his efforts.
If you want to try it, you’ll need a world problem that has existed for generations. Set it in the real world—as horrible as that might be—and add one bit of magic that is your inciting incident. Like the subject of capital punishment in the Green Mile. Or the possible destitution of a family after the breadwinner dies in The Ghost and Mrs. Muir. I’d like to include Hearts in Atlantis which discusses sexual harassment in the work place, but this one may not land under Magical Realism.
Any thoughts? Please share. I’d love to read them.