With so many studies and criticism about the “pícaro” in the Golden Age, to address the issue at this level of the golden studies can be repetitive readings or anachronistic interpretations. However, Victoriano Roncero presents a study showing a clear line of the emblematic conduct between the five novels of the picaresque genre and draws an outline of study based on the tradition of laughter, humor and jesters. Inquiries makes clear in this book, because the subject requires it and have success, it build comprehensive study based on subject matter in this book.
The introduction is written by Ignacio Arellano, who exposes much of the subject, chapters and topics to consider. This overview highlights the main theme insightfully: laughter and its effects. Victoriano Roncero, in the first chapter of the book, presents a series of picaresque history of laughter, based on the popular Jester figure, with echoes of works on Greek and Roman festivals. He also claims in this chapter that the carnival tradition and Catholic precepts of laughter exist in golden letters since medieval times. The second chapter analyzes the first picaresque novel: el Lazarillo de Tormes. Through a complex, elaborated and accurate study, Roncero structures elements that the anonymous author left us in his work, both as a reference to a tradition and as part of it. The third part presents laughter in Guzmán de Alfarache, Mateo Alemán novel focuses on teaching the rogue from his life story. Subsequently, he analyzes the Pícara Justina and focuses on clownish elements relative to the seventeenth century aristocracy. The fifth section focuses on a work Roncero discusses in several of his works: I refer to El Buscón don Pablos by Francisco de Quevedo. In Don Pablos, Roncero highlights the place as this rogue directs to humiliation of society. There is an approximation of the work with the consolidation of rupture and continuity within the analysis of the picaresque novel Estebanillo González. In this novel, Victoriano Roncero exposes the
rogue and buffoon, combining elements of tradition with innovation, to end with the “Golden Age” of the picaresque novels.
The study presented by Victoriano Roncero in a book goes directly to the essence of literature considered in terms of laughter, humor, jesters, etc. Through the analysis of the picaresque novels Roncero highlights the role of laughter and its important role not only in literature but also in the golden society/era. Roncero’s study helps not only to address issues of the rogue figure in their literature, but also to create ties of influence and power in the background of classical and medieval tradition reformulated in the novels of rogues.