Julia Alvarez: The Voice of the Mirabal Sisters Numerous accounts of families affected by oppressive dictatorships exist all around the world. Julia Alvarez, an author whose father was involved in a resistance group to such a regime, is a prime example of one of those stories. After leaving her childhood home of the Dominican Republic, Alvarez struggled to adapt her lifestyle to match that of an average American. During this time period, Alvarez recalled her experience under an authoritarian government and combined it with her impressive storytelling skills to create a fictional documentation of another family just like her’s.
Lola takes advantage of her deteriorating mother whose illness represents the declining hold of the norms over Lola. Since her mom “will have trouble lifting her arms over her head for the rest of her life,” Lola is no longer afraid of the “hitting” and grabbing “by the throat” (415,419). As a child of a “Old World Dominican Mother” Lola must be surrounded by traditional values and beliefs that she does not want to claim, so “as soon as she became sick” Lola says, “I saw my chance and I’m not going to pretend or apologize; I saw my chance and I eventually took it” (416). When taking the opportunity to distinguish herself from the typical “Dominican daughter” or ‘Dominican slave,” she takes a cultural norm like long hair and decides to impulsively change it (416). Lola enjoyed the “feeling in [her] blood, the rattle” that she got when she told Karen to “cut my hair” (418).
The Mirabal’s father had been engaged in a risky love affair with another woman, and Margarita is one of the daughters of the family formed by the secret couple. After receiving valuable information regarding three of the imprisoned Mirabal sisters from her mother’s cousin, Margarita transferred the news—on the label from a can of tomato paste—to an anxious Patria who was relieved to hear that her sisters were alright. Margarita, of her own accord, made the great risk to smuggle the priceless note to Patria. If she had been caught, death may have ensued for the poor woman, and the incarcerated siblings might have been killed as well. The great courage Margarita displayed is an act worthy of lavish praise, yet none was given.
Esmeralda Santiago is able to intertwine her childhood memories and her experiences together with her family in order to communicate her life as Puerto Rican. Santiago depicts the importance of culture and customs in her memoir. Esmeralda was
Names provide a means of identity and self-worth, allowing people to create a sense of individuality. Even-though, her name name has negative religious connotations, Pilate embraces her name because it allows her to free herself from the constraints of societal norms. She is able to become her own person and truly find herself in the world. Pilate keeps her name in her ear, so she is able to pass on her character to her kin. Finally, to not allow her name to “die” when she does, Pilate creates an unforgettable essence for her to be remembered by.
Alvarez and her family have a lot of trauma considering there lives in the dominican republic and living under the dictator,through it all alvarez's parents raised a daughter who would share their story in a fashionable matter that told the story how it was.
From the start, it is clear that T.C. Boyle’s Tortilla Curtain aims to shed a light on the topic of Mexican immigrants in the United States. However, by having both a Mexican and an American woman share similar violent experiences with men, Boyle also places an emphasis on the less pronounced theme of sexual violence and discrimination against women, even in polar opposite realities. Early on, an invisible bond begins to form between the two main female characters, America, a recent Mexican immigrant and mother to be, and Kyra a successful white businessman. And while they never actually meet one another, as they endure and recover from their own personal problematic experiences with certain men, they are affected immensely by these events. America tries her best balance her new life of being an illegal, living in the ravine of Topanga Canyon with Candido, finding work and preparing for her baby to come.
This story of “The broken Web” critiques structures of Chicana culture through illustration of cultural hybridity. The aspect of domination is prevalent in the culture with men having control of the women. The women are deprived most common right being subjected to control by their partners. Issues of oppression are addresses and it indicates how different levels of oppression can interact in specific contexts. This is evident through the series of oppression that takes place in Martha`s dream and the actual oppression that here mother went through in the hands of her
In the story, “The Myth of a Latin Woman” is about the author Judith Ortiz Cofer talking about her life and growing up as a Puerto Rican girl. She talks about the struggles she had to go through, like always being under heavy surveillance by her family. She would be under their watch because she was a girl and was expected to protect her family’s honor and to behave like in her family’s terms “proper senorita”. I agree that she was forced to mature fast just at her teenage years; a point that needs emphasizing since so many people believe Cofer could never act her age.
Pilate and her family did not live in the best conditions, as they lived in “A narrow single-story house… [and] had no electricity because [they] could not pay for the service. Nor the gas”, yet they were still the characters who were the most satisfied with their lives even when they had the bare minimum to survive (27). Compared to Macon Dead, Pilate was much happier with her life in her small house caring for her family than Macon was in his nice house with his family. This was evident to Milkman as he felt more comfort while in Pilate’s house than he ever did in his own house, which was more associated with materialism than Pilate’s house was. Because of the lack of materialism in Pilate’s life, it is simple to see how Pilate was able to thrive and live in
In contrast to his father’s view of life, Antonio’s mother has a much different opinion. Antonio’s mother felt differently about what Gabriel wants for Antonio as, “My mother was not a woman of the Llano, she was the daughter of a farmer. She could not see the beauty in the Llano and she could not understand the coarse men who lived half their lifetimes on horsebacks.” (2). Anaya builds upon the different perspectives on life through both of Antonio’s parents ' cultures and upbringing, to exemplify the range of cultures in a syncretic society like New Mexico, as well as the added information to the formation of opinions and outlooks on life.
In the Dominican Republic, General Rafael Trujillo 's dictatorship is being judged within the eyes of the four Maribal sisters. In the story "In the Time of the butterflies" by Julia Alvarez the four sisters that are all strikingly different, are contemplating on whether to follow along with the anti- Trujillo movement. Minerva being the most dominant one out of all the sisters, is first to follow through against Trujillo. Alvarez involves feminism, rhetorical and literary devises, and portrayed various themes in her novel. Along with showing the strong relationship, and the differences between the four sisters, they showed us readers the true meaning of family.
Jamaica Kincaid’s The Autobiography of My Mother signifies a pivotal point in her writing style. Her earlier novels have some semblance of her personal life, but, in this novel, the protagonist Xuela does not share a common experience with that of the author’s life. The mother-obsessed protagonists of her earlier fiction are absent. Instead, we have a seventy year old half-Carib Dominican.
José Martí was a brilliant 19th century writer, poet, political and revolutionary leader, and Cuban intellectual; however, above all else, José Martí was a proud Cuban citizen. Though born to two Spanish parents, Martí never waivered in his identity as a son of Cuba, and he would spend—and eventually give—his life fighting for the cause of Cuban independence. Martí loved his native country, and desired freedom and pride for all Cubans. Never was this more apparent, than in his poem, “Versos Sencillos” (Excerpts from Simple Verses). The resistance from oppression infused with Cuban patriotism prevalent in this piece, is central to Marti’s message and to the Cuban Revolution as a whole.
In Isabel Allende’s short story “Two Words”, readers follow the story of Belisa Crepuscalario, a woman who was born to an extremely poor family and sell words for a living. Colonel, a really tough and closed man who does not show his feelings easily and had spent his life serving homeland in the civil war. Late in the story she meets Colonel where the tough and closed man become a totally different person. In “Two Words,” Allende emphasizes the power of words through Belisa’s work to develop both Belisa and Colonel’s character, helping him realize that life is beautiful and enjoyable. To understand the power of words in Belisa’s life, it is important to know a little bit about her background.