Narrative by Judith Ortiz Cofer Essay

627 WordsMar 31, 20133 Pages
The narrative written by Judith Ortiz Cofer discusses some of the many experiences she has encountered throughout her life dealing with stereotypes and common misconceptions of Latin American women. To further engage her audience in the story, she provides detailed past experiences that have stood out to her the most. In order for the readers to fully understand those past encounters, some of which are cultural and common among Latinos, Cofer explains them in careful detail. For example, Cofer explains the concept of piropos which are poems composed on the spot by men to women as a form of admiration. This helps her introduce the audience to her own experiences with piropos and how she has dealt with them throughout her life. One of the…show more content…
She knew how to dress for specific occasions such as a Sunday mass or a party, but this was a challenge. This shows the audience that Latin girls dress the way they do because of their cultural background and something that is considered acceptable in Latin America can differ from what is acceptable in North America. Cofer goes on to discuss how the way Latin women dress can be misinterpreted as a come-on to men when in fact, that usually isn’t the case because dressing that way is normal and even encouraged by Latin mothers. The point Cofer was trying to display in her narrative was that the outward appearance of Latin women should not be mistaken with who they are but rather be considered as part of their culture. This narrative describes a cultural clash between America’s mainstream views and opinions and Latin women who have to struggle with these stereotypes from a young age. Career Day is one of the examples in which Cofer experienced falling under one of those stereotypes and feeling like an outcast when the nuns at her school displayed the Latin girls as the negative models of Career Day. Cofer’s strong opinions against these stereotypes is made clear throughout the story as she explains random instances she remembers of how others view Latin girls and how the media often objectifies women comparing them to “Hot Tamales” and other offensive
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