Mericans, A Story By Sandra Cisneros
Mericans, a short story by Sandra Cisneros.
Looking at the setting and first impressions.
My first impressions of this story is of course, the nationality is spanish, the spanish names and terms spell that out quite nicely. Secondly I notice it is most likely written from the view of a young child. The hints towards wanting to run off and explore, but resisting due to their promise to their “awful grandmother” shows clues to the age and relationships of the characters. As I read further I can gather that the main character, whose view the story is written in, is a little boy playing with his brothers while waiting for their grandmother outside of church. The little boy doesn’t seem to like the games his brothers are playing, but joins in anyways. Descriptive hints towards the plaza the boys are playing in are evident in the writing, such as “there are armies of penitents carrying banners and flowered arches while musicians play tinny trumpets and tinny drums” The boy describes the church as smelly “like the inside of an ear” and appears to be bored and none all to happy when he is there. Luckily the boys are out in the beautiful plaza in the sun. The boy also states that the church has high ceilings, blue glass and filled with saints. Also from the games the boys are playing I would have to guess the era is one shortly after world war 2 (German fighter planes). The characters are obviously Mexican immigrants, the “awful grandmother” appalled at the lack of respect her family shows for the ‘old country’. There were two main settings in this story the dark, dingy and smelly church, also the bright, busy plaza where the boys played, a very effective contrast. The grandmother in this story was holding fast to her old countries beliefs, and praying for those in her family who weren’t, just like her grandchildren who were “born in a ‘barbaric’ country”. The author uses many details in the story for us to visualize the cultural environment. This story was quite interesting, showing the common struggle between immigration to a new country, trying to keep your beliefs and not forgetting where you come from.