The Journey of Jory and Belen in Talking to the Moon Essay

The Journey of Jory and Belen in Talking to the Moon Essay

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In Noël Alumit’s novel, Talking to the Moon, he engages his readers in the life of the Lalaban family. Through the journey of the Lalaban family, Alumit lets us understand the different issues that Filipino-Americans encounter in the United States. Alumit cleverly utilizes the journeys of both Jory and Belen to provoke thoughts about family as well as different social issues; he utilizes these characters to progress the narrative arc of the novel. As the head of the Lalaban household, Jory and Belen take their journeys at times together and at times separately. Though physical journey is evident, Alumit permits these characters to travel space, time, and worlds. Through the usage of the concept of family, the journey of Jory and Belen unfold where they realizes their own realities. During this journey, the notion of the “American Dream” is contested. Alumit uses Jory and Belen’s experiences to provoke our thoughts about family, reality, and the “American Dream”. Through the exploration of these journey we understand the Filipino immigrant experience in American. These journeys also show us how different categories and identities affect our understanding of family.
Jory and Belen come from opposite backgrounds. Jory grew up with no parents and lived a simple life while Belen comes from the Dubabang family, a well-known family in their province. Belen lived a comfortable life while Jory struggled all his life. Belen’s childhood is filled with materialism and fantasy while Jory lived a struggled life facing the realities of the world. Having completely different experience, Alumit creates different path of journeys for Jory and Belen. As each character travels their own path, they learn about the world around them. At times, Jo...


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Jory and Belen’s background have affected their views on the world. Because of the impacts of people in their lives, their views on reality completely differ. Jory and Belen experiences with the family as a unit differ; Jory only experienced it when he started his own family with Belen. Their desire to maintain their family has helped the journey of both characters. Jory is one who always lived in the actual reality and grasped the truth about the world in a quicker fashion compared to Belen, someone who lives in her own world of materialism and desire. Through the realities they lived, the slowly debunked the myths of the “American Dream.” Their realities provided a venue for them to grasp the complexity of the “American Dream”. However, in the end the journeys of Jory and Belen reconcile by occupying the realms of the actual reality.

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