Essay legal alien pat mora

The poem “Legal Alien” is about a woman of Mexican parents, who is born and raised in America. An American citizen established by law, but at the same time this person feels like an illegal alien because of how some people treat her. She is fluent in both, English and in Spanish. Feels American because she is, but at the same time she doesn’t. She is looked at by Americans (Anglos) as inferior, and looked at by Mexicans like she doesn’t belong. They make her feel like she is not one of them, like she doesn’t fit anywhere. “An American to Mexicans a Mexican to Americans a handy token sliding back and forth between the fringes of both worlds” (14-18).– What this means is that she feels like she could be from both places and at the same time from neither, but on the border of each. Happy, sad, confused, lost but at the same time she tries to cover all her feelings and what she is thinking “by masking the discomfort” (20) is that she has to grin and bear the fact that she is being

The people of American visualize her in two different ways. Either they view her as ‘exotic’ or find her inferior as the “the other.” Either ways, this may also symbolize the conception of woman in a patriarchal society. Though they belong, they are perceived as ’the other’. Either the female is placed on a pedestal or is looked down upon. She is never placed on an equal footing with a man. They view her as a different specimen. Similar is the case with the Mexicans who sense that she only speaks Spanish but is different from the rest of the lot. Though they do not express this aspect candidly, their eyes do eloquently speak. Therefore she is like a piece of jigsaw puzzle that does not fit in America or Mexico:”“An American to Mexicans /a Mexican to Americans.”
She appears to herself as‘a handy token’. She is like a portable tool that slides back to and forth to situations, not only adopting, but also adapting. The idea of slipping back and forth also brings to mind the movement of a pendulum that does not stay on either side for long, nor does it permanently assume a neutral position. The speaker is thus in a state of identity crisis. She rem ains an object of scrutiny, yet smiles to camouflage her discomfort. People do not take an effort to know her but prejudge her ‘Bi-laterally.’

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Essay legal alien pat mora

essay legal alien pat mora


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