ENG 283E: Our Premodern Epics: How Epics Create Culture and Vice Versa

Don Quixote: Statue of Don Quixote and Sancho Panza at the Plaza de España in Madrid, Spain

          This statue brings to life the two main characters of the novel. In the novel Don Quixote seems very fictional and it might be hard to picture him as a knight. The statue validates the characters and makes them more relatable. The first thing that people think of when they hear about Don Quixote is the scene with the windmills. In the novel, Quixote says, “look there, friend Sancho Panza, where thirty or more monstrous giants present themselves, all of whom I mean to engage in battle and slay (Cervantes, Book 1 Chapter VIII)”. This is an important quote because not only does it show the friendship between the two central characters, but it is also part of the most memorable/iconic scenes of the novel. The contrast between Panza's clear mind and Quixote's imaginative one is refreshing and is why their relationship is so interesting. Eventually Panza gives in to Quixote's madness/creative imagination. Throughout their adventures together the pair become really close. It is important to note that this occurs without Sancho actually receiving anything in return. 
          The location on the map is La Plaza de España in Madrid, Spain. This location is important because it is where the statues of Don Quixote and his partner are located. This is a very popular tourist destination and it shows how important Miguel de Cervante’s work was to the Spanish society. In his article, Robert Bayliss states, “Don Quixote has been (and continues to be) appropriated in various modes of cultural discourse” (Bayliss, 383). The statue is a perfect example of that. It is also believed that Cervantes and his wife are buried in Madrid. The statue of Don Quixote is meaningful to me because he wasn't afraid to do what made him happy even if others didn't understand it. 

Bayliss, Robert. "What Don Quixote Means Today."Comparative Literature Studies 43.4 (2006): 382-97. Web.
Cervantes, Miguel De. "Chapter VIII." Don Quixote. Trans. John Ormsby. The University of Adelaide. 17 Dec. 2014. Web. 

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