Sunday, October 25, 2009

Banana Grove Fight

The scene with Gualinto brutally attacking the banana tree shows much of Gualinto's developing character. When we, as Americans, thing of battles our country fought, we tend to think of two armies marching, with their weapons at their sides, towards the other. Once they reach a meeting point, they acknowledge each other and the person in charge yells "charge". Each army gives it all that they have and the best side wins. From the scene with Gualinto and the banana tree, the Mexican way of fighting is revealed. It seems as though it is more of a guerilla warfare type fight. Throughout the passage the reader gets plenty of imagery, intense action verbs, and similies that give us a clear description of how Gualinto feels. The sentence "He held the killer's gun arm powerless with his left hand as he stabbed sharply, viciously, while his adversary spent his strength in the most titanic but unavailing struggles" helps us see the character of Gualinto and how his experiences or lack thereof have shaped him.

Gualinto refers to two names during his battle with the rinche-tree, he asks for a Apolonio Gonzalez and a Apolonio Rodriguez. From this the reader knows that there are not two Apolonio's, but rather that Gualinto is still a child and innocent. He hears from his family incidents of what rinches have done, but he does not know the facts or the background. It is clear to see that in Gualinto's free time he obsesses with revenge on the rinches for what he thinks they have done, "killed unarmed men and little children". When he finally snaps out of his dream he is frightened at what he has done. He not only worries about getting caught by his mother, but he is also mad at himself for even doing something like that. This shows that he is still child-like even though he has a rage like a vengeful Mexican.

At this point in the novel, the reader may assume that scene forshadows Gualinto's future character. However, it is unclear whether his fear of authority or his vengeance will take over in his character.

1 comment:

  1. Nice job, Jessica.
    After having read the novel, which do you think takes over his character? You might think also about how he's always, even into his teen years after he stabs Chucho, afraid of "the law." To what extent might that determine his ultimate decision to become a member of the law?