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Struggle in Literature

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Sayil Resendiz

Mexican American Lit.

Ito Romo

October 6, 2010

Struggle in Literature

"But there is suffering in life, and there are defeats. No one can avoid them. But it's better to lose some of the battles in the struggles for your dreams than to be defeated without ever knowing what you're fighting for."- Paulo Coelho.

In our world, we all seem to struggle at least once in our lives. Some struggle more severe than others, but in the end we all know how it feels. For me growing up I never came across a situation where I can say I struggled. I was so used to getting everything I wanted from my parents and never having to work or struggle to get something. As a teenager I thought that was something cool to brag about and feel proud of, but as I graduated from high school, I soon learned that not everything was going to be handed to me and that if I wanted to follow my dreams and make it out in the real world I was going to have to work towards it, and most of all struggle my way into the real life. In the following stories, "and the Earth Did Not Devour Him", by Tomas Rivera, "The Hammon and the Beans", and "George Washington Gomez", by Americo Paredes, struggle is involved in the character's lives. I believe it is a different kind of struggle that most of us have never gotten to or maybe never get to experience throughout our existence.

The story of "and the Earth Did Not Devour Him" by Tomas Rivera is about the migrant experience of a young man who is enraged because of his family struggles through poverty and illness. As his father gets ill because of a sun stroke, the young man realizes that it is an everyday struggle to stay alive as they are out in the fields working. When he talks to his mother he says, "How come we're like this, like we're buried alive? Either the germs eat us alive or the sun burns us up. Always some kind of sickness. And every day we work and work. For what? Poor dad, always working so hard. I think he was born working (Rivera)." It seems very difficult for him and his family to have good health the way they are forced to work in such unhealthy, hot conditions. The young man seems to be going through many mixed emotions and sort of confused of not knowing why they have to have that kind of life as he states, "tell me, why must we live here like this? What have we done to deserve this? You're so good and yet you have to suffer so much (Rivera)." A lot of us often ask this question, why is it that if we do things the right way, we end up being the ones having to suffer or struggle in life.

In the following story, "George Washington Gomez" by, Americo Paredes struggle is also involved. Unlike "And the

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