USC Digital Folklore Archives / Posts Tagged ‘passion’
Legends
Narrative

La Llorona de Guanajuato

Main Piece:

“In Guanajuato there was a beautiful woman who had a husband that was a Count. When her husband left to work, he would always return very late. One day the wife found out that he was cheating on her. She was furious and wanted to punish him. She thought of many ways and one night she thought that when her husband returned one night, he would find his children with slit throats. She carried this idea out and the night came where her husband arrived with the children dead. The husband went crazy at the sight of his children. His screams brought the neighbors to their home, where they took his wife to the police. The wife was sentenced to be burned at the stake in a white dress. Before she was burned, a priest convinced the wife to repent for the sin she had committed. Her regret for her sins was immediate and she howled these words “Mis hijos! Ay mis hijos!” They burned her and she continued to yell this until her death. From that point on, the people of Guanajuato talk about a woman who walks around downtown Guanajuato yelling “Ay mis hijos.” Some have even seen her roam in the white dress she died in.

 

Context:

The informant is a 77-year-old Spanish speaking woman, born in Mexico. Her grandmother told her this story and the informant has passed the tale along to her children and grandchildren. She believes that the tale is a warning in decisions that are made in moments of absolute rage.

 

Analysis

I agree with the informant, this crime committed by La Llorona was that of a crime of passion which could have been avoided. The saddest part of the tale is that because of the woman being blinded by rage, the young lives of her children were ended.

Humor

Purple Passion

Due to the length of this story, a transcript is not provided. Instead, the audio clip of the Purple Passion story is attached to the Folklore database article. (Link)

Context: This informant is a nineteen year old college student, attending school in the US, but originally from Singapore. This anti-joke was told to me by the informant in a college dorm room. The informant made sure to take long pauses and deliberately spoke in an awkward manner to further extend the length of the anti joke. This, in turn, made the lack of a punchline all the more frustrating.

Background: My informant heard this story from  one of his friends while sitting at a bar. He appreciates this story because of how elaborate it is. The story weaves an intricate web of events, all centered around the use of a single term – “Purple Passion”. His story, by its end, is nearly ten minutes, and yet, it has no punchline. Instead it ends abruptly and unsatisfyingly, and the reader reacts accordingly, with anger, surprise, and frustration.

Analysis: Purple Passion is an expertly built anti joke, that, when properly delivered, demonstrates the efficacy of such constructs. In wasting the time of its subject so expertly, the story actually has a greater chance of spreading itself. Since ones time is wasted, telling the story to another person might appear to “settle the score”, and thus leads to its continued retelling. I personally enjoyed the story to the end, as it’s structured in a very deliberate manner – it is constantly building up to an ending, before suddenly turning the boy, and, by extension, the listener, towards another false objective.

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