Comparison Of Male Characters In Oscar Casares Brownsville

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Within the stories of Oscar Casares’ Brownsville, the male characters demonstrate machismo characteristics toward other people. In “Mr. Z,” Mr. Z displays his prideful behavior toward Diego to assert and obtain a sense of dominance and respect. While in “RG”, RG demonstrates profound pridefulness and insecurity after his Anglo neighbor took his hammer. Within, “Big Jesse, Little Jesse,” Jesse displays his insecurity based on how he views his son’s disability. Thus, revealing his prideful persona that values social acceptance over being a good father. Finally, in the story of “Charro,” Marcelo’s father is detailed to have been prideful of his family’s honor by asking his sons to kill a man who was threatening them. The characters of Casares …show more content…
I believe Penalosa’s definition to be true based on the male characters of Brownsville whose pride is expressed to receive respect from society. Within the story of “RG,” RG constantly narrates how Bannert, “made me uncomfortable,” or that he, “takes everything for granted” (Casares 28). He narrates Bannert to make Bannert seem as though he’s the one with a pride problem. This narration further creates Bannert, an Anglo, as the antagonist of the story. However, even though RG is prideful toward Bannert he is still concerned about how Bannert will view him. “Why should I be the one doing the asking?,” (Casares 28) RG thought to himself after his wife told him to ask Bannert about the “stolen” hammer. RG chooses to not ask Bannert because he’s afraid of how Bannert will react after his inquiry. Within, “Big Jesse, Little Jesse,” Jesse desires for his son to be, “normal,” (Casares 103) so that no disrespect will come their way. In, “Mr. Z,” Mr. Z degrades eleven-year-old Diego to show his male dominance by labeling his dad a, “ ‘bullshitter’ ” (Casares 17). This male dominance is to demonstrate to Diego that he is to be respected, and not the other way around. Anzaldua, in Borderlands/La Frontera, details how her father’s interpretation of machismo was, “Being …show more content…
Pitones, and Jesse Diaz Jr examines whether the machismo ideology is solely in middle-class men, or if it’s a cultural upbringing. Within the study, the agreeing views of middle-class men are not a hundred percent for each survey question. In Mirande’s study, she breaks up machismo into positive and negative conceptions. Through the view of negative conception, men are seen, “as incessantly partying, drinking, fighting, and womanizing” (Mirande, Pitones, and Diaz 311). Mr. Z, “took a quick drink,” (Casares 12) as he drove Diego and Ricky from work. Mr. Z can be shown as a man who has a drinking problem, as he seemed happier while drinking. He also tries hitting on Ricky’s mom, which demonstrates how his machismo has no bounds. Mirande’s positive conception views men to be, “associated with honor, dignity, and self-respect” (Mirande, Pitones, and Diaz 311). RG feels his self-respect is taken away after his hammer is taken by Bannert. The hammer, possibly resembling the honor that was once felt between the two men. The survey of the study consisted of different male migrants from Mexico and Central America. The study also differentiated the men by their socioeconomic class to determine whether the dispersal of machismo is in all classes or just middle-class men. The researchers found that “machismo and traditional masculinity are largely class-based,” (Miranda, Pitones, and Diaz 328) rather than phenomena. The men who were classified as

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