Manuel Puig explores that question in his novel, “Kiss of the Spider Woman”. An examination of the life and death of two parallel characters, Molina and Irena, reveals Puig’s assertion that in order to liberate ourselves from oppression that denies us this right to love, we must first find something worth loving, worth living for. In the process of doing this, we find out a lot about ourselves, who we are, what we stand for, and the fear that the oppressors instill begins to lose its hold over our lives.
Puig demonstrates this by first painting a picture of the relationship between the oppressed and the oppressor. Oppression keeps individuals in a bind. A prison of both a mental and physical state. In the overall narrative within the novel, this is explicitly shown, with the characters Molina and Valentin being in a literal prison. Valentin, being a revolutionary, is in prison for having committed a crime against the state, against the systemic injustice imposed over an oppressed society, Molina for having committed sexually deviant crime.
Valenti and Molina’s presence in the cell reflects the power that the oppressors hold over the minority voice of people who attempt to rise against. The torture that Valenti endures throughout the novel reflects the use of fear as a tactic to keep oppressed people in their subordinate status. To further this idea, Valentin, after hearing Molina talk about how his friend Gabriel walks tall and straight, states “inside, at least as far as this culture goes, without power behind you no one walks tall” (62). Va...
... middle of paper ...
...tity, Molina when he finds someone who accepts his true identity. In both cases, they find the affirmation that was previously denied to them as a result of an oppressive society. The death here is a death of the self, the repressed self.
Affection and attachment, wanting intimacy and closeness with someone is imprinted in our very DNA. Our true natures are revealed in the existence of our desire for love. When an ill-intentioned external force denies us that desire through the use of fear however, it has the detrimental effect of keeping us locked in prisons of confusion and despair. There is hope, however, that redemption can come by finding affirmation of our individual identity. There is hope in identifying and knowing the true nature of our identities, in being okay with who we are because others are okay with who we are. We love because we were first loved.
Need Writing Help?
Get feedback on grammar, clarity, concision and logic instantly.Check your paper »
- ... Homosexuals may have also felt insulted because of the fact that it seemed that Valentin was having these relations with Molina as he seemed to do this in order to use him as a messenger. Gays/Lesbians might have felt insulted as they might have interpreted as being an object. This particular thing can be viewed when Valentin offers to kiss Molina to indirectly persuade him to do something for him: “- Molina, what is it. Did you want to ask for what you asked for before. -What. -The kiss -No, it was something else.... [tags: homosexuals, relationships, friendship]
772 words (2.2 pages)
- Character Study in Manual Puig's Kiss of the Spider Woman On the surface, Manual Puig's Kiss of the Spider Woman is about politics and oppression. Caged literally and figuratively in an existential cell, both Molina and Valentin are wards of a police state and are therefore powerless to change their circumstances. But the novel is really about how spiritual freedom is cultivated and made manifest by Molina's retelling of his favorite movies. Because the substance of the films is first filtered through Molina's perspective, his perversion of the characters and plots reflect his own progression from an oppressed prisoner to a heroine who freely chooses the path to her own death.... [tags: Puig Kiss of the Spider Woman Essays]
599 words (1.7 pages)
- In terms of the book, “Kiss of the Spider” written by: Manuel Puig. I can say my personal reaction to the book is Interesting. While reading this book I was being transported to the jail cell where this book took place. When referring to the characters in the book when the book introduced Molina and Valentin describing them as two inmates being locked in a jail cell. I was able to read how Molina was a romantic homosexual man who spoke “Freely” about his feelings. On page (44) he said; “I’m in love with a wonderful guy and all I ask is to live by his side for the rest of my life.” He didn’t care much about being judged he spoke in such a sentimental way, it was the same way characters spoke... [tags: Prison, Penology, Prison cell, Film]
1068 words (3.1 pages)
- The Role of the Nazi Film in Kiss of the Spider Woman In Kiss of the Spider Woman Molina uses his memories of classic movies as a means of escape. He is particularly drawn to melodramatic movies with a strong romantic theme, which is the central focus of his retelling of the movies. On one level, Molina wishes to escape the oppression and boredom of his prison cell. He retells the movies to Valentin as a means to entertain them both during their long hours of imprisonment.... [tags: Papers]
427 words (1.2 pages)
- The Silver Kiss by Annette Curtis Klause This Book seems to be quite current; however I would say that it more than likely took place during the 90's. There are many facts supporting my conclusion such as their knowledge of Cancer, the type of cars driven, the public transportation, and the descriptions of the buildings and stores in their town. The setting is important because Simon is from a different time.... [tags: Klause Silver Kiss]
1193 words (3.4 pages)
- The Kiss Mama hands me my last three dresses, packs my Sunday hat and stockins, and kisses my forehead. "You're a woman now, Elsa, and he'll take good care of you," she says. It's high time you build your own family." Papa kisses my cheek and closes the door of Nick's pick-up as I wave goodbye to my five brothers and sisters. With fifteen years of southern life as my platform, I plunge into the waters of reality by the skin of my teeth. Immediately I am a wife, forced to begin a family of my own…just like Mama.... [tags: Personal Narrative Writing]
1111 words (3.2 pages)
- Love and Hate in "Since there's no help, come let us kiss and part." "There's a thin line between love and hate" describes the theme of Michael Drayton's sonnet "Since there's no help, come let us kiss and part." Unlike most love sonnets, which talk about the many intricacies of love, Drayton's poem discusses the end of love and its possible recovery. This Shakespearean sonnet consisting of 14 lines can be subdivided into 3 parts. In each part, the poet uses a different voice. He uses 1st person in the first part, 3rd person in the 2nd part and 2nd person in the last part.... [tags: Since there's no help come let us kiss]
2252 words (6.4 pages)
- It is, at times, stated that paradoxes allow for misinterpretation in almost every aspect of life. Wherever those paradoxes appear, conflicts, both external and internal, arise and misunderstandings ensue. In the two novels The House of the Spirits by Isabel Allende and Kiss of the Spiderwoman by Manuel Puig, however, the characters Alba and Molina, respectively, create paradoxes through their subversive actions. These paradoxes create conflicts in self-interest, which, in turn, reveal the impossibility of actually knowing or understanding one’s true motives.... [tags: essays research papers fc]
1092 words (3.1 pages)
- Have you ever had the desire to fit in. Well this man did. From the streets of New York to the hills of L.A. came Harry Lockhart. A man with the desire to fit in with people that do not want him, a man pretending to be something he's not, and a man that strives to get "the girl that got away". All because he is new to L.A.. "This is one of Downey's most enjoyable performances, and one of Kilmer's funniest. It's a relationship comedy wrapped in sharp talk and gunplay, a triumphant comeback for Black, and one of the year's best movies."( E.... [tags: Movie Film Review]
1038 words (3 pages)
- Ira Levin's A Kiss Before Dying Ira Levin was twenty-two when he wrote his first novel, the award-winning thriller “A Kiss Before Dying”. He was twenty-five when he, fresh from military service, wrote his first play; the smash-hit adaptation of Mac Hyman’s “No Time for Sergeants”.... [tags: Levin Kiss Before Dying Book Review]
1193 words (3.4 pages)