Not Logged in.
Book Jacket

My Broken Language


A Pulitzer Prize–winning playwright tells her lyrical coming of age story in a ...
More about this book

Quiara felt that her father and his wife forced her to decide to "be white or be Puerto Rican," and the requirement to decide still bothers her. Have you had a similar turning point in your life?

Created: 01/06/22

Replies: 6

Posted Jan. 06, 2022 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
davinamw

Join Date: 10/15/10

Posts: 3442

Quiara felt that her father and his wife forced her to decide to "be white or be Puerto Rican," and the requirement to decide still bothers her. Have you had a similar turning point in your life?

Quiara felt that her father and his wife forced her to decide to "be white or be Puerto Rican," and although she made a choice that she’s clung to since, the requirement to decide still bothers her. Have you had a similar turning point in your life, when your outlook took a definitive turn?


Posted Jan. 06, 2022 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
wendya

Join Date: 01/06/22

Posts: 13

RE: Quiara felt that her father and his ...

No one forced Quiara. It was her choice to make. But, why choose? Why can't you be more than one race or ethnicity?


Posted Jan. 07, 2022 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
paulak

Join Date: 04/21/11

Posts: 264

RE: Quiara felt that her father and his ...

Such a tough situation! I think the divorce also played a huge role in Quiara feeling like she faced this decision of Puerto Rican versus white. It seems most kids of divorce struggle with allegiance, even when the divorce is amicable, and the cultural difference just make this back-and-forth even more pronounced for Quiara.

I was shocked at the scene where Quiara's step-mother asked her not to talk about her Philadelphia family when she was visiting her father. How immature and insensitive. So that certainly didn't help Quiara making a seamless transition between households.


Posted Jan. 07, 2022 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
melanieb

Join Date: 08/30/14

Posts: 265

RE: Quiara felt that her father and his ...

Yes and I think most people of color have had at least one experience where they’ve made the decision to downplay some aspect of themselves that might be considered too much for a particular setting.


Posted Jan. 16, 2022 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
christinec

Join Date: 03/09/20

Posts: 25

RE: Quiara felt that her father and his ...

No but am dying to know what her father thinks of the book! And how did he respond to her perspective posed in this question!!!


Posted Jan. 18, 2022 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
acstrine

Join Date: 02/06/17

Posts: 460

RE: Quiara felt that her father and his ...

I didn't necessarily see her father and step-mother as forcing Quiara to choose, but I thought is was just plain wrong to have the conversation they did in front of her. They both behaved as her mother and her mother's family didn't exist- -they denied who she was- -and implied that she might be better if she did too. So force, no. Made it easier to choose, yes! And how sad that they could not see the value in celebrating both- -all of who she is.

I think this is typical of people who have a very tunnel vision view of life. They see only their existence and decide that everyone should live this way. All the while they are robbing themselves of the opportunity to grow and experience and creating unnecessary divisions based on their judgments and small world views.

My son is Mexican and Native American, on his father's side. He is white passing, so he has to deal with some of this- -sadly there are members of his own family who make derogatory remarks about Mexicans. He has been more effective standing up to his friends, who seemed to feel their demeaning comments would be embraced by all in the friend group. My son does not have a close relationship with his father, so he has had to learn many things on his own. My role has been to offer resources and love him for exactly the person he is.


Posted Jan. 19, 2022 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
melissa c.

Join Date: 01/10/21

Posts: 124

RE: Quiara felt that her father and his ...

Thankfully I have never been in the situation of having to "choose" with whom I identify. I agree with christinec - I would also love to know what Quiara's father thinks of the book. I'm sure such a decision is not uncommon for people who are of mixed race/religion, etc.


Reply

Please login to post a response.