63 pages 2 hours read

Américo Paredes

George Washington Gómez: A Mexicotexan Novel

Fiction | Novel | Adult | Published in 1990

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Part 3, Chapters 9-13Chapter Summaries & Analyses

Part 3: “Dear Old Gringo School Days”

Part 3, Chapter 9 Summary

As Guálinto progresses through grammar school, the dual identities pulling at him only accentuate. At home and on the playground, he follows his Mexicotexan heritage, but the books and figures his white teachers share with him pull him more towards the Anglo world. “He […] realized there was not one single Guálinto Gomez. That in fact there were many Guálinto Gómezes, each of them double like the images reflected on two glass surfaces of a show window” (147).

Guálinto’s internal divisions are only accentuated by the racial politics of the school. Guálinto’s white peers view him as an equal in the classroom, but on the playground, he and his Mexicotexan friends are excluded from their groups. Their textbooks also present exceedingly harmful, racist depictions of Mexicans and their culture, but the white teachers are too fearful of being branded Communists and losing their jobs if they protest. Guálinto enters puberty with irreconcilable and oppositional views of the “Gringos” and of his fellow Mexicotexans.

Part 3, Chapter 10 Summary

Time pass, and Guálinto grows too old to play in the banana grove. The neighbors have installed a home telephone, and Feliciano has started a farming operation on 80 acres of land downriver from Jonesville, largely managed by Don José Alcaraz.

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