Thomas C. Foster's Every Trip Is A Quest

1988 Words8 Pages

Every Trip Is A Quest For many people who study literature almost all works of literature are related to eachother in some way or another. The most common relationship found between texts is some structure of a quest. In Thomas C. Foster’s book How to Read Literature Like a Professor a quest is described as “[consisting] of five things: A quester, a place to go, a stated reason to go there, challenges and trials, and a real reason to go there”(3). Though verifying that this works for every work of literature is impossible, finding novels that coincide with this definition is much easier, a good example being The Hummingbird’s Daughter by Luis Alberto Urrea. In this text, Luis Alberto Urrea makes identifying the quester as Teresita quite easy. The title of the book is one of the biggest hints. Using Foster’s simple definition of a quester, “a person who goes on a quest”, it …show more content…

According to him, the hero or the narrative of the novel tends to have needs that the hero can’t fulfill directly if the story is to continue. A less important character is therefore needed to take the fall for the hero so the story can continue rolling (80). Foster calls this the “surrogacy phenomenon”(77), and there is no better example of this than the engineer, Lauro Aguirre in The Hummingbird’s Daughter. For the majority of the book Lauro Aguirre is Tomàs’ right hand man, but as things start turning gray for Tomàs he can’t be the one persecuted because the story would be over. That’s where Aguirre takes over. It is known that Aguirre has very radical views on the oppressive Mexican dictatorship, and it is assumed that Tomàs shares his views or else they wouldn’t be friends. So when the rurales come knocking on Tomàs’ door on page 304, they aren’t looking for him they are looking for Aguirre “Ya te chingaron, paisano!” he tells Aguirre without suffering any consequences

Open Document