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In this lesson students are introduced to the basic elements of magical realism, a genre that combines fantastical events with the mundane normalcy of life. Students examine Octavio Paz’s short story “My Life with the Wave” as an example of the genre. In the story, the narrator travels to the ocean and falls in love with a wave, whom he bottles and takes home with him; the two go on to both cherish each other and fight terribly. After discussing the story, students create, in groups, plot sketches for their own adaptations. Students might imagine relationships with cell phones, the sun, or college applications, for example. Given time, students could also write the story, either individually or in groups. Overall, the lesson challenges students to engage with magical realism by creatively adapting a classic of the style.



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