Customer Reviews for

Under the Feet of Jesus

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( 10 )
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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 21, 2004

    Beyond Importance to Latin Literature

    Adolescence is a perplexing period of a child¿s life. Estrella, a 13 year old migrant worker, experiences this unexpected time of maturation while managing the complications life has bestowed upon her family. Through Viramontes¿ use of vivid imagery there is an urgency portrayed in these settings and emotions; the reader becomes instantly sympathetic towards each character¿s struggles and triumphs. Petra, Estrella¿s mother, attempts to raise five children alone after her husband abandons their family in a time of despair. Eventually she is aided by an older man who secretly has a burning desire to return home, but feels Petra¿s need for companionship and assistance. With the lack of a stationary home and financial instability, the odds are against Petra¿s family to survive, but her compassion and strength cease to relent. Estrella¿s admiration for her mother becomes more pronounced as she recognizes the trouble she has been through to provide for her family. Petra¿s surviving qualities are reflected in her daughter as she discovers her new found self-identity and determination to discontinue the cycle of constraints she so often encounters. Other reviews discuss Estrella¿s passion, curiosity, and growth, but it is necessary to emphasize her mother¿s characteristics and triumphs as significant influences on Estrella¿s developing independence through her role as a daughter, sister, lover, and worker. It has also been suggested that this novella will ¿hit home in Latin literature collections¿ by Gilbert Taylor from Booklist; this statement underestimates the power of Under the Feet of Jesus. Although it is a quick read, it colorfully illustrates endless issues that any individual may grapple with. For this reason, this novella will be of great value to any literature collection. Although the Latin community will appreciate it, this work deserves recognition beyond those parameters. It is inevitable that any reader will identify with the many facets portrayed. Estrella¿s family is part of this culture, but their story is applicable to a multitude of others, and is essential in illustrating past and present experiences in America. To deny this piece as important to other literature collections is ignorant of the issues it so brilliantly exposes. This novella depicts how love will prevail in the absence of material possessions. It displays a longing for love, a dependence on love, a new recognition of love, and the guiding love for a family throughout this ill-fated situation. Beyond the depiction of love, hope is consistently rising within the characters. Anyone will appreciate the vulnerable relationships that are imperative in revealing the prominent symbolism Viramontes has to offer. Through each character¿s lens, different interpretations of emotions are exhibited, and all are aligned with common desires and questions of the human soul.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 11, 2001

    A wonderful chicana story....

    The first time I read this book I was a little confused and didn't quite pick up on all of the symbolism. The second time I read it, I was amazed at how one person could intertwine so many symbolic references and still have a great story. You really have to pay attention when you are reading it, but you get out of it exactly what you put in.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 18, 2010

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 30, 2008

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 2, 2011

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