Cultural Conflict In Antonio Marez's Bless Me, Ultima

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“Knowing yourself is the beginning of all wisdom,” is a quote by Aristotle, providing a vivid understanding that if someone knows who they are as a person, it is difficult to persuade them into thinking otherwise. However, if one is ignorant of their identity, it is easy to provide them with conflicting thoughts as well as confusion toward their culture, customs, race or anything particularly having to do with their background. In Bless Me, Ultima, the author exhibits the most frequently used cultural conflict from the Chicano culture in rural Mexico in the 1940s and purposely clashes it with Catholicism and the English Language. The book introduces Antonio who can be described as a young boy who is prone to moral questioning, in search for…show more content…
It takes time, experiences and lessons until the concept can be grasped. Although it is a simple “who are you?” question, the answer is not given until one can meet their fullest potential and then have it handed to them. Antonio Marez is brought into the novel as the protagonist who seems to have trouble with obtaining the answers he is in search for, concerning his destined future as well his beliefs. Although his parents did not seem to realize it, their conflicting views made it difficult for him to accept either of their frequently expressed belief systems. He is confronted with two paths arranged by his mother, who is of a Catholic descent and by his father, the son of Vaqueros to pursue in which concern being a becoming a priest or roaming the plains, continuing tradition. Because both of his parents believed so strongly in their values and morals, he did not have any certainty which was correct and which he should abide by. In chapter 1 of Bless Me, Ultima, his mother states “You will be like my brothers. You will be a Luna, Antonio. You will be a man of the people, and perhaps a priest” (Anaya 9). This quote providing evidence to the idea that this career was the choice of his mother’s rather than his own. At this point, he realizes his parents beliefs are now in act that could potentially affect his own future and what he does later on. He now second guesses the morals and values he has grown up with, seeing the difference in elements between the
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