Throughout the book, Mona in the Promised Land, the main characters are faced with stereotypes which they cannot control. Stereotypes in society shape the way people are perceived. Everyone deals with their stereotype's in a different way. The two characters who deal with the most stereotypes are Mona, and Barbara. According to their stereotypes, Barbara is a better all around person than Mona, due to her social class, but when it comes to dealing with stereotypes Mona is a much stronger individual.
Like all people, Mona and Barbara choose to deal with their stereotypes in different ways. Mona chooses to deal with her stereotypes by trying to change them, while Barbara deals with them by changing herself. One of the first stereotypes that Mona is witness to in her life is when she misbehaves. Whenever Mona does not mind her manners her mother will snap at her, "You be a good Chinese girl." Mona recognizes this as a stereotype whenever her mother says it. She finally tells her mother, "I am not Chinese, I am American." By telling her mother that she is an "American" girl, which implies to her mother that she is free to make her own decisions, Mona is trying to change the "Chinese" girl stereotype. This shows that Mona is a strong individual willing to fight stereotypes.
Barbara Gugelstein is Jewish. It is brought up almost every time Barbara is talked about in the book. One of the first stereotypes that Barbara is faced with is the Jewish nose. Barbara asked her paren...
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