Archive for April 16, 2020

Short Stories: The Handsomest Drowned Man in the World

Goals for the Week:

  1. Follow along with the daily readings of short stories.
  2. Decide on and begin a project from the Choice Board
  3. Continue to collaborate with teachers and classmates

Today’s Checklist:

  1. Learn about Gabriel García Márquez and Magical Realism
  2.  Analyze the imagery in “The Handsomest Drowned Man in the World”
  3. Create your own image to illustrate “The Handsomest Drowned Man in the World”

Today’s Lesson!


  • ELAGSE9-10RL7 Analyze the representation of a subject or a key scene in two different artistic mediums (e.g., Auden’s poem “Musée de Beaux Arts” and Breughel’s painting Landscape with the Fall of Icarus), including what is emphasized or absent in each treatment.
  • ELAGSE9-10RL6 Analyze a particular point of view or cultural experience reflected in a work of literature from outside the United States, drawing on a wide reading of world literature.

Learning Target: 

I can analyze how artists represent a short story by looking at images inspired by “The Handsomest Drowned Man in the World” so that I can create an illustration of my own.


Our short story today is by Gabriel García Márquez, a famous Colombian author. García Márquez died in 2014 at the age of 87. This obituary video clip from the BBC discusses his life and legacy:

Work Session: 

Your assignment for this unit!

You will have one major assignment for this unit, and you get to choose it! Visit the choice board and select one project to complete about one story. In other words,

Today’s Story: “The Handsomest Drowned Man in the World” by Gabriel García Márquez

Today’s story is a little….weird. The basic plot is that a group of people from a tiny fishing village find the corpse of a drowned man floating up to their shores. They clean the man up so they can bury him properly, and in doing so, they discover he’s drop-dead gorgeous. The people of the village, men and women both, are so smitten by the beautiful man,whom they name Esteban, that they change their village forever so it can be a place they’re proud to be Esteban’s home.

Here is the complete story in its original Spanish:

…and here is the full story translated to English:

It’s weird. It’s also beautiful. As you read the story, pay close attention to the imagery the author uses to paint vivid pictures in your head. Despite being about a bloated, drowned corpse, the man is described as beautiful. Even the negative images, like the dullness of the little village before the man arrives, are vivid and realistic. Can’t you just see them in your head?!

After reading, go do a Google Image Search for “The Handsomest Drowned Man in the World” or just “Handsomest Drowned Man” and check out some of the images that artists have created, inspired by this story. Here are a couple of my favorites:

Spend some time browsing these images, because today I’d like you to try your hand at creating your own!

Closing Session:

For our closing session today, I want you to create an illustration inspired by “The Handsomest Drowned Man in the World.” This is not a graded assignment, but I will feature your creations here on the blog! You can use any medium you like – crayons or markers, pencils, make a sculpture, or create one of these cool nature assemblages and take a picture. Any way you choose to create is fine, I just want you to take some time over the weekend and be creative! It’s good for us to be creative while we’re in isolation 🙂

Remember, no new lesson tomorrow, so I’ll see you Monday!

Looking Ahead: Monday’s Story

If you want to get ahead on things, here is the story we’re reading on Monday: