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An Analysis of Gualinto's Role in George Washington Gomez, a Novel by Americo Paredes

In Americo Paredes’s novel “George Washington Gomez,” the major character George Washington “Gualinto” Gomez is a young Mexican-American man, growing up in Jonesville-on-the-Grande, Texas. As the novel chronicles his journey to adulthood in early 1900’s Texas, the historical backdrop provides a variety of trials and tribulations for Gualinto that shape his identity and perspective on life. Pressured to turn out to be a “great man” by the idealism of his late father, Gualinto struggles to walk the lofty path set prior to him. 1 character who does his utmost to make certain that Gualinto realizes this dream is his uncle Feliciano. Spurred onward by Gumersindo’s wishes that Gualinto turn into a wonderful man, Feliciano enters the difficult world of politics and business with the intent of offering a financially steady atmosphere in which Gualinto would have the opportunity to obtain this dream. Ironically, Feliciano eventually disapproves of the man that Gualinto becomes since Gualinto has no intention of assisting his individuals and has a adverse opinion of their resistance as a entire. Even so, without his monetary help, his insistence upon a formal education, and his role as father figure, Gualinto would not be the successful man that he has grow to be by the end of the novel.

During a time period when most Mexican-American’s have been poor and functioning dead end jobs, Feliciano was able to guarantee economic safety for Gualinto. This was an important venture for him because he “endeavored to make as much income as he could by all indicates achievable to understand Gumersindo’s dream since he knew that dreams are far more most likely to come true if a single has money” (Paredes 155). Hence, Feliciano did not comply with Lupe and the sediciosos into Mexico, but mindful of his promises to Gumersindo, moved the household to Jonesville-on-the-Grande exactly where he quickly transcended several socioeconomic ranks. He starts off as a bartender below the tutelage of Faustino Bello, but swiftly moves into the political arena gathering votes for Judge Norris and the blues. Then, Feliciano effectively owns his own grocery store which produces the majority of his wealth. Even though not wealthy by any implies, as the sole breadwinner of his family members, Feliciano is able to offer a property for his loved ones with a “store bought” front door and a porch swing that symbolizes their prosperity. Even once “La Chilla” hits Jonesville-on-the-Grande, Feliciano and his family are 1 of the couple of Mexican-American families that are able to weather the storm with minimal damage due to the reality that Gumersindo had not place all of the familie’s income in the bank. All of this he does in order to give Gualinto the potential to become a great man. As opposed to other Mexican-American families, Gualinto does not have to work to help support his household, even though he chooses to for a brief stint while in higher school. As Gualinto matures and watches his other close friends drop out of school and commence functioning, he continues to study and develop into a successful man. Other people in the story had been not as fortunate. For example, Gualinto’s sisters Carmen and Maruca. As girls, Feliciano did not care regardless of whether or not they finished college and, since they were girls, believed it ideal that they drop out anyways. With no Feliciano’s help as far as their education was concerned, each Carmen and Maruca ultimately do drop out and become absolutely nothing far more than someone’s wife by the finish of the novel. From this, one sees that with out Feliciano’s difficult operate and monetary good results, Gualinto would not have had the time or the potential to grow to be a man of high esteem in the way that Gumersindo envisioned it.

Feliciano’s monetary savvy is yet another element that supplied Gualinto with the opportunity to pursue the single most crucial tool to becoming a fantastic man: his education. Feliciano did not know much about the parameters of becoming a wonderful man but he “made as a lot cash as he could, at jobs he enjoyed but that at times produced him doubt regardless of whether he was doing the right factor. All for his nephew’s education” (Paredes 49). Starting with main school, Gualinto had a difficult time adjusting due to Miss Cornelia consistently picking on him and embarrassing him in front of the complete class. However Gualinto persevered and even excelled, receiving recognized for factors such as his ability to study fluently at such a young age. Next, Gualinto tackled middle college and ready for secondary college. High college presented numerous challenges for Gualinto what with Maria Elena Osuna utilizing him for his grades, La Chilla, and Maruca’s pregnancy. Despite his decreasing academic efficiency however, Gualinto finished this educational pursuit as well. Unlike most of Gualinto’s Mexican-American contemporaries, Gualinto created it not only to higher school but also by means of college and law college. This was some thing of a privilege for Gualinto as by the time he created it to higher school, he was 1 of only 5 Mexicans left in the schooling system. Feliciano was the major, if not sole cause for Gualinto’s getting able to attain this. If it have been not for his capability to supply for his household and the college fund that he had place away extended just before “La Chilla” hit, Gualinto would have long considering that dropped out of college for economic reasons. Alternatively, Feliciano recognized the significance of education early on in Gualinto’s upbringing and impressed this upon him continuously.

Obtaining assured that Gualinto was educated and financially sound, another contribution of Feliciano that ensured that his nephew became a great man was the father figure position that he took in Gualinto’s life. Feliciano by no means had a wife or kids of his own, so he invested in Gualinto as if he have been his personal son. Yet, Gualinto was hardly ever appreciative of something his uncle did for him. He was embarrassed that they were not as rich as other families such as The Osuna’s and could not appreciate what Feliciano had gone by way of to supply what they did have. Regardless of Gualinto’s attitude, Feliciano continued to be the father Gualinto would by no means know, specifically by reminding Gualinto to by no means be ashamed of his Mexican roots. A single sees how Gualinto struggles to reconcile this with his position in the Anglo globe. On 1 hand, he attends a school mixed with Mexicans and white men and women and he tries to be friendly with them, but on the other hand he nonetheless feels the aggravation toward the rinches like the rest of his folks. This is demonstrated by the scene in the banana grove where Gualinto pretends that one particular of the trees is a rinche and says to it “Why do not you kill me, eh? Because you shoot people in the back. Simply because you kill unarmed men and little kids.” (68). Regardless of Gualinto’s confusion, Feliciano did what he could to preserve him grounded. Perhaps Feliciano’s greatest act as father figure in Gualinto’s life was honoring Gumersindo’s dying wish that he would not inform Gualinto how his father died. Maintaining this guarantee was a enormous duty for Feliciano that he did not even agree with. It eventually causes Gualinto to consider negatively of his father but “Gumersindo had provided [Feliciano] a job to do. The boy was too young to comprehend. Let somebody else inform him soon after [Feliciano] was dead” (Paredes 264). Concealing not only his father’s past but his own from Gualinto ended up becoming a huge sacrifice for Feliciano due to the fact Gualinto ultimately comes to consider of each of them as cowards for a time. Feliciano, nonetheless, recognizes the gravity of the scenario and knows that if any individual had been to discover out about his role as a sedicioso, he would be in jail and there would be no one particular to provide for the loved ones. He also knows that Gumersindo wanted Gualinto to grow up with no hate, but if Gualinto knew the situations of his father’s death, it would be impossible for him not to. As a result, Feliciano allows Gualinto to consider what he desires to make sure that he would always be there for him and that he would also honor his promise to Gumersindo.

Feliciano is the single most critical cause that Gualinto grew up to be as successful as he was. Feliciano’s continual dedication to his economic achievement is what guarantees Gualinto the potential to go to school and get an education that far exceeds the education of his contemporaries. In conjunction with that, Feliciano’s part as father figure in Gualinto’s life was another crucial contributing aspect to Gualinto’s eventual prosperity. In spite of Feliciano’s very best efforts, Gualinto does not develop up to turn out to be the excellent man that helps his Mexican individuals. In reality, he grows up to adopt a rather negative view of Mexican resistance as a entire, even legally changing his name to dissociate himself with it. Whether or not Gualinto is proud of his Mexican heritage as a grown man, he owes all he has to Feliciano — the Mexican padrino who gave him all.
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