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Comparison of Latin Males

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Introduction

2 Comparison of Latin Males Both Esteban Garcia from the novel The House of the Spirits written by Isabel Allende and Pedro from the novel Like Water For Chocolate, written by Laura Esquivel are seen as weak males in the Latin American culture. Esteban Trueba is described as machismo by the author. A machismo male has an exaggerated display of masculinity where the male characteristics such as strength, aggressiveness and emotional response are emphasized, ("Machismo" par 1). Pedro is considered a weaker man because he does not have the required characteristics of masculinity, such as bravery, money, leadership and lack of emotion. Both Latin authors, Laura Esquivel and Isabelle Allende, have created weak male characters. And in the Latin culture, for a man to be considered 'macho', he must be willing to be jealous, malicious, vindictive and willing to fight without hesitation to protect one's manly image. In Allende's novel, Esteban is considered to be a machismo male; whereas, in Esquivel's novel, ironically Pedro does not play the machismo role. Even though both Latin American writers create two different types of male characters; a machismo male and weaker male, they both end up failing. In the beginning of The House of the Spirits, Esteban Trueba is seen as a man in love; he gave up two years of his life to live in a "wooden shack" (21) to work in a mine for Rosa the beautiful. ...read more.

Middle

Esteban buys a big luxurious house also to show his authority, his wealth, and his success. Esteban thought that buying such an expensive house with extravagant decorations would prove his manhood, but it just makes him weaker as he thinks the house is a "reflection of himself, and family" (93). Even though Esteban is the owner of the 'big house on the corner,' he is still not the man in charge of the house. Clara has more control of what goes on in the house than Esteban, as she is the one who decides to "have another room built in the house, when a new guest arrives" (93) or "have a wall knocked down, until the mansion was impossible to clean" (93). So even though Esteban Trueba is a 'strong' man who likes to boast about his belongings, he is still seen as a weak character because his wife has control over him. 4 In Like Water for Chocolate, Pedro does not have any expensive belongings or a successful career to boast about. But Pedro feels that even though he is married to Rosaura, he still has an extravagant prize, Tita. But because Pedro does not have the strength to stand up to Mama Elena, to say that it is Tita he wants to marry, and it is Tita that he will marry, he remains with her sister, Rosaura. Pedro is not like other men, who like to boast about possessions because Pedro does not own much. ...read more.

Conclusion

But all he is doing is hurting Tita even more, and that shows that he is not a macho man, even though he is trying to be closer to Tita. He has no control over his relationship with Rosaura or Tita, as "just a look from Mama Elena can inform him to look for Rosaura to repair the damage" (Esquivel 48). This shows Pedro's weakness and Mama Elena is in control. In conclusion, the authors use these two different types of men to show that men in the Latin American culture can be considered weak. Normally, when people think of a 'macho' man, they think of strong men who know how to take control, but in Allende's novel, Esteban as a macho man is a weak character, who gets caught up in materialism and power. In Esquivel's novel, he a weak man that is easily controlled by the other female characters, even the weakest female characters such as Rosaura. But by using two different male characters, the authors are able to show that the man who strives for active fulfillment as a young man, such as Esteban Trueba in The House of The Spirits, can become frustrated and end up withdrawing because he is not able to deal with his pain. And in Like Water for Chocolate, Esquivel creates a character who is easily dominated by the females, yet, after twenty years of suffering, is finally able to achieve his happiness. Therefore, Latin American authors use different male characteristics in their novels to highlight the strength of the females and the suffering of the males. ...read more.

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