Focus and contextualize the question “What does it mean to be at home?” through the experience of immigrant Latina women searching for a home in New York.
At the beginning of Julia Alvarez’s novel How the Garcia Girls Lost Their Accents, Yolanda has returned to visit the Dominican Republic after a five-year absence. It had been many more years since she emigrated with her family to the United States (US). At her welcoming party with her extended family, she secretly wishes to herself: “Let this turn out to be my home” (p. 11). Gradually the readers discover that the four sisters—Carla, Sandra, Yolanda, and Sofia—have never felt fully at home in the United States, each one in her own way.
For your essay, focus on one of the four “girls” and based on your interpretation of the novel:
Explain in detail the main way that girl is at home in the US.
Analyze, in contrast, the main way that girl is not at home in the US.
Describe how that girl may confront this difficulty in order to be more at home in the US or how she may reconceive her idea of “being at home” to reinterpret her own experience.
Parts A, B, and C give you the outline of the paper. You can rely on your own definition of “being at home.” But you should support your analysis with concepts from at least one of the three philosophical essays we are discussing in class: “Negotiating Latina Identities” by Ofelia Schutte; “Playfulness, ‘World-Traveling’ and Loving Perception” by Maria Lugones; and “Understanding Immigration as Lived Personal Experience” by Daniel Campos
Requirements and assessment criteria:
The analysis should be between 5 and 6 typed pages (double-spaced, 12 pt. font, regular margins).
It will be graded based on whether:
you have a clear thesis to address each issue;
you have a well-structured argument to support your theses;
you support your argument with specific evidence from the relevant texts: and
you demonstrate good style, grammar and spelling.
A grading rubric was provided with the syllabus and is associated with this assignment in Blackboard. Please review it.