“Women’s Role in Society”
In Junot Díaz’s short story collection Drown and Truman Capote’s non fiction novel In Cold Blood, women’s characters are portrayed as degrading, powerless, weak, alcoholics and victims of infidelity. Since a socio-economic environment plays a role on the treatment of these women, sometimes the machista culture is also to blame for their abuse as they have been taught that women are weak, worthless and sexual object.
In Ysrael, Diaz tells the story of Yunior’s older brother Rafa and his relationship with girls. In the Dominican Republic where the story takes place, women are seeing as sexual objects, cheating is part of life and getting beat up by the husband or boyfriend is the norm. Not having a role model to tell they right from wrong, and seeing his mother being emotionally abused by his father. Rafa believes his actions towards women are justifiable since this is what he sees in his surroundings and at home. His absentee father has lied to them on several occasions, therefore he believes is it right to lie to women. Further, his disrespect for the opposite sex is obvious at a young age, Diaz says: “There was a girl he’d gone to see, half Haitian, but he ended up with her sister” (Diaz 6). Rafa sees women as toys he can play with and does not care for their feelings or the consequences of his actions. In addition, since this is part of his culture, he feels he has the right to also disrespect women, and he teaches his younger brother Yunior that this is the way to women like to be treated.
Having a role model like Rafa, Yunior learns without hesitation that women like to be insulted and battered. When he finally has the opportunity to be with a girl, Yunior, just like his brother Rafa taught him, learns that it is fine to hit a woman, “telling me all the good things we’d do and after a while I hit her and made the blood come out of her ear like a worm but right then, in that apartment, we seemed like we were normal...