One Hundred Years of Solitude is a work of magical realism.

Point of View

Third person, but sometimes uses vivid descriptions to show the reader the world through the eyes of one of the characters.


Although García Márquez writes with wonder and is truly sympathetic to the deep emotions of his characters, he also maintains a certain detachment, so that we are always aware that the book is an account of Macondo as it appears to a modern, cultured eye.


Past, with occasional flashbacks. There are also brief, single-sentence references to future events that unfold with the novel.


Macondo, a fictional village in Colombia, in the early 1800s until the mid 1900s.


The fact that both Colonel Aureliano Buendía and Arcadio will face firing squads is heavily foreshadowed in several places. The final, apocalyptic reading of the prophecies is also foreshadowed throughout the novel: García Márquez often mentions the prophecies in passing, and we see various members of the family puzzled by them at different times.

Major Conflict

The struggle between old and new ways of life; tradition and modernity

Rising Action

Macondo’s civil war; Macondo acquires a banana plantation.


The banana workers go on strike and are massacred near the train station.

Falling Action

The banana plantation shuts down; Macondo returns to its former isolation and backwardness; the Buendía clan dies out; Aureliano (II), who finally discovers how to read Melquíades’s prophecies, realizes that the rise and fall of the Buendías has always been destined to happen.