Asti's AP Lit & Comp 2018-2019 discussion

Dreaming in Cuban
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Dreaming in Cuban > Question 3: Setting

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message 1: by Mrs. Asti (last edited Jul 02, 2018 04:51AM) (new)

Mrs. Asti | 6 comments Mod
Many writers use a setting to establish values within a work of literature. For example, the country may be a place of peace and virtue, or one of primitivism and ignorance. Write a response in which you analyze how the setting functions in Cristina Garcia's novel, DREAMING IN CUBAN. Avoid mere plot summary.

Respond to this post using the comment link below. At the top of your post, please include your first and last name.


message 2: by Adriana (new)

Adriana Zubizarreta | 12 comments Adriana Zubizarreta
The setting in Cuba functions and has value in the novel because it shows how nothing has changed, even when visited almost 20 years after. What I mean by that, is that Cuba feels the same. Good and bad. Even though poverty took over in other parts. It gave a sense of imagery when some people in the family visited Havana and said how it was once decent or the rich side of Cuba, but now looks like every other part of Cuba. It could be seen as "emotional and sentimental" at the same time for Lourdes and Pilar because that is there home away from home, but seeing how it has not changed does not make them want to go back. It is an emotional life, full of family, wealth, and even bad experiences.


message 3: by Amanda (new)

Amanda | 8 comments Amanda Barbon
The main place in the novel, Dreaming in Cuban, is Cuba. Throughout the whole novel, Cuba is either looked at positively or negatively. Each and every character looks at it as a reminder of their past, their home, a nightmare, a dream, or just an island. The novel revolves around Cuba. Every character has their own connection to Cuba. For example, Pilar at first symbolized Cuba to Celia. When she thought of Cuba, she envisioned Celia with her drop pearl earrings. She saw Cuba as her salvation from her mother, Lourdes. Towards the ending of the novel, she realized that Cuba was not the place for her, it was New York, but her love for Celia was larger than that. If you turn to look at Lourdes, her opinion toward Cuba is the complete opposite. Cuba for her is where her mother, Celia lives, the person that abandoned her as a baby. Also, Cuba contains the hate that she has towards El Lider. Whether it’s positive or negative, Cuba has a meaning to every character and plot of the story. Everything that occurs in the novel leads back to Cuba or it connects to it.


message 4: by Adriana (last edited Aug 05, 2018 05:52PM) (new)

Adriana Zubizarreta | 12 comments Amanda wrote: "Amanda Barbon
The main place in the novel, Dreaming in Cuban, is Cuba. Throughout the whole novel, Cuba is either looked at positively or negatively. Each and every character looks at it as a remin..."


Adriana Zubizarreta's response
Cuba is referred to either a positive and/or negative place. It was all based upon memories that were made or people and things that changed one's opinion of their good old hometown. How many people could really hate the place they were raised in.


message 5: by Sadie (new)

Sadie G | 12 comments Sadie Garcia-Praslin
In Christina Garcia’s novel “Dreaming in Cuban”, setting plays a vital role. Aside from Cuba, New York is a setting that is often mentioned. New York symbolizes freedom and success concepts that are nearly impossible achieve in Cuba. For example, Lourdes adapting to the American culture which allowed her to open two successful bakeries and raise her daughter Pilar in a country full of opportunities. In the novel, Cuba represents exile, emotional suffering, and political unrest due to the varying opinions Cubans have of El Lider’s leadership. The characters in the novel all tend to associate Cuba in either a good or bad way. For example, Lourdes associates Cuba with her mother who she resents, her rape and the loss of her baby. On the other hand, Pilar associates Cuba with her grandmother, Celia and the part of her cultural identity she longs to discover. New York was placed as a setting in the novel, to represent the things that are not possible in Cuba like opportunities, freedom and economic success.


message 6: by Sadie (new)

Sadie G | 12 comments Adriana wrote: "Adriana Zubizarreta
The setting in Cuba functions and has value in the novel because it shows how nothing has changed, even when visited almost 20 years after. What I mean by that, is that Cuba fee..."


Sadie Garcia-Praslins Response
I completely agree with Adriana's response to the prompt because Cuba has not changed and seems to be stuck in time. Although both Lourdes and Pilar will always view Cuba as their home to some degree, however, seeing that Cuba and its people have not changed made them feel like exiles to a society they can no longer join.


message 7: by Andres (new)

Andres Alfaro | 7 comments Andres Alfaro
In the novel, Dreaming in Cuban, the main setting is Cuba. Even though the setting of the book is sometimes New York the characters always think of Cuba. An example of this is in page 32 where Pilar is talking about her arrival in New York, “I’d run through great heaps of leaves just to hear them rustle like the palm trees during hurricanes in Cuba.” Everyone in the novel is connected to Cuba somehow and has different memories of it. Celia has memories of Cuba before the revolution and supports what Fidel Castro is doing to Cuba. Lourdes remembers her rape by the Cuban soldier and Pilar remembers her grandmother. Whether the memory of Cuba is a disagreeable one or a delightful one all of them are connected to Cuba. The setting of Cuba is important to the plot because it sets an environment or mood of despair in the characters because of all of the poverty. Also, the setting affects the decisions that the characters take or the events that happen to them that create the theme of the book.


message 8: by Andres (new)

Andres Alfaro | 7 comments Adriana wrote: "Adriana Zubizarreta
The setting in Cuba functions and has value in the novel because it shows how nothing has changed, even when visited almost 20 years after. What I mean by that, is that Cuba fee..."

Andres Alfaro's response
I agree with Adriana Zubizarreta, in Cuba even after being visited 20 years later everything is still the same. All of Cuba seems to be in poverty and decay. When Lourdes came back to Cuba she only saw poverty, decay, and her husband’s farm in the hands of the state. Even Pilar who loved Cuba and felt like she belonged there saw how poverty was overtaking Cuba and how it affected her grandmother’s house.


IsabellaVandamas | 6 comments Cristina Garcia was trying to tie all of the settings together in a way, she introduces a small family that starts in Cuba and ending in Cuba with the death of Felicia her mother telling the Santeros “ witch doctors ! Murders ! Get out “ (pg 190). Even when Lourdes was in New York she missed the sounds of the birds from Cuba. How Cecilia is introduced by the sea and always seen near the water. How both Lourdes and Cecilia are patriot to their country Lourdes to America and Cecilia to Cuba through el leader.


message 10: by Felix (last edited Aug 20, 2018 05:30PM) (new)

Felix Ramirez | 12 comments Felix D. Ramirez
The setting of Dreaming in Cuban affects the characters in the novel differently because they each have a different view of it. To Pilar Cuba was a place of dreams and happiness which she wanted to live at instead of the Americas. Cuba to her is everything she dreams of and everything positive in her life. This is because of her grandma Celia who is living in Cuba and who she wishes to go live with. On the other hand Lourdes is not very fond of Cuba. The main reason is because of her memories there and what she has to face if she ever returned. The fact that her mom did not love her as her daughter and gave her to her father as an object has stuck to her throughout her entire life. All the conflict in her past makes Cuba seem like a negative place to her. The plot is interpreted differently by the characters of the novel because of their memories and expectations.


message 11: by Felix (new)

Felix Ramirez | 12 comments Amanda wrote: "Amanda Barbon
The main place in the novel, Dreaming in Cuban, is Cuba. Throughout the whole novel, Cuba is either looked at positively or negatively. Each and every character looks at it as a remin..."


Felix D. Ramirez
I agree with Amanda on the fact that Cuba represents different things to different people. The way characters feel throughout the novel can also shift as they come to realize what they envisioned of Cuba was not what they experienced. I agree with the example of Pilar who thought of Cuba as a lovely place where happiness thrives because of her grandmother. This is the main reason as to why she wanted to live in Cuba and not New York. Then throughout the novel her viewpoint shifts and she comes to realize that New York is where she belongs.


message 12: by Paolo (new)

Paolo Soto | 3 comments Paolo Soto
The main setting the in the novel "dreaming in Cuba" is Cuba(what as surprise) but this setting is different for each character, because throughout the novel Cuba is represented differently to each character either negatively or positively, for example Lourde has a very strong negative feeling towards Cuba due to the violence and many other factors, so she instead adopts the American culture even going as far as achieving the American Dream. On the other hand you have characters like Pilar (lourde's daughter) who view Cuba in a positive light she relates Cuba with her grandmother, She longs to live in Cuba she wants to connect with the country emotionally and physically. The setting itself is all up to interpretation depending on the character. It can either be in seen in a good or bad way. This is how the novel creates its character development. The setting is all the same, but much much different.


Jonathan B. | 12 comments Jonathan Bejarano
The setting in "Dreaming in Cuban," Cuba, plays a vital role in the book. Just knowing that the story would be set in Cuba, a reader can already guess that it's citizens have gone through many struggles and hardships throughout their life. As shown in the book, this family does go through these unavoidable struggles. It influences almost everything in the novel, the families thoughts, the actions of others, and beliefs. Even though Pilar grew up in the United States, she thought a lot about Cuba and even questioned where she belongs. The politics in Cuba was also important as Celia was influenced to dedicate her time to the revolution in Cuba. This also affected her relationship with her daughter, Celia supported the revolution and its purpose while Lourdes thought it was a scam and she didn't believe in it. This difference contributed to their separation.


Jonathan B. | 12 comments Andres wrote: "Andres Alfaro
In the novel, Dreaming in Cuban, the main setting is Cuba. Even though the setting of the book is sometimes New York the characters always think of Cuba. An example of this is in page..."


Jonathan Bejarano
I agree with Andres when he says that everyone is somehow connected to Cuba. Their thoughts are also almost filled by Cuba as Celia is thinking about the revolution, Lourdes thinking about the wrongs of the revolution, and Pilar thinking about her grandma who lives in Cuba


message 15: by Kamari (new)

Kamari Dawson | 5 comments Kamari Dawson
The setting of Cuba is an important asset to the story. Depending on the character it holds different emotions for them. I would like to focus on Celia’s point of view on Cuba. To many tourists, Cuba is a tropical paradise with warm beautiful beaches, and a rich culture. To some degree, Celia loves Cuba just as much maybe even more. She’s loyal to a fault. Celia’s homeland country Cuba is her pride and joy. She even agrees with the Communist dictatorship of Cuba. As seen on page 3, “Celia brings the binoculars to rest in her lap and rubs her eyes with stiffened fingers. Her wattled chin trembles.” (Page 3). Even though she is tired, Celia refuses to rest because of her patriotism to Cuba. She even got married and had her children in Cuba! All in all, Cuba is a place that Celia holds dear to her heart.


message 16: by Melina (new)

Melina Caballero | 12 comments Melina Caballero

The main setting of "Dreaming In Cuban" is Cuba. The setting plays a pivotal role in the character's lives. Cuba is seen by characters like Lourdes as the place to blame for all her struggles. For example, Cuba was the place where she was raped by soldiers of El Líder and also where she lost her second child. To her daughter, Pilar, Cuba is the missing piece of her identity and also where her grandmother, who she shares a special connection with, lives. For Celia, Cuba was where the revolution resided, she dedicated herself to it and El Líder. As the novel progresses, Cuba is seen from different perspectives from the characters but these memories and experiences they all face, good or bad, shape them as a character.


message 17: by Melina (new)

Melina Caballero | 12 comments Sadie wrote: "Sadie Garcia-Praslin
In Christina Garcia’s novel “Dreaming in Cuban”, setting plays a vital role. Aside from Cuba, New York is a setting that is often mentioned. New York symbolizes freedom and suc..."


I agree with you on the fact that New York was portrayed to be everything Cuba was not. As Lourdes lived her successful life in America, we see through characters like Celia and Felicia, how different and difficult Cuba life is compared to American culture.


message 18: by Anabel (new)

Anabel | 12 comments Anabel Guerrero
The main setting of Cristina Garcia’s “Dreaming in Cuban” is the island of Cuba. All characters have a specific opinion on Cuba, and it’s either positive or negative according to their perspective and experience. On one hand would be Lourdes. She connects Cuba to her mother rejecting her as a child, and never wanting her. This makes Lourdes have a negative opinion of Cuba, considering the worst part of her life was lived there. Cuba was also the place where Lourdes was sexually assaulted, and it most likely reminds her of the pain she felt at the moment. She has more of a connection with New York, where she has her own bakery and has built a new life in which she’s happier than she was in Cuba. On the other end of the spectrum we have Pilar. Pilar associates Cuba with her grandmother Celia, who she feels an extreme connection with. Pilar sees Cuba in a positive way, to the point of wanting to abandon her parents and secretly run away to her grandmother. As a whole the setting of Cuba has a deep connection with all the characters in the story.


message 19: by Anabel (new)

Anabel | 12 comments Melina wrote: "Melina Caballero

The main setting of "Dreaming In Cuban" is Cuba. The setting plays a pivotal role in the character's lives. Cuba is seen by characters like Lourdes as the place to blame for all h..."


I really like how you brought up that Lourdes lost her second child in Cuba, it adds on to why she feels so negatively about it. Overall, I have to agree with you on the fact that the setting has a different meaning to every character.


message 20: by Ashley (new)

Ashley Gonzalez | 4 comments Ashley Gonzalez
In the novel, ‘Dreaming in Cuban’, The setting represents many things, like freedom, oppression, opportunities, misery, peace, rebellion, and many more things. For most of the novel the setting is in Cuba, a place where to Lourdes and Pilar seems outdated, brainwashed, and poor. A change of setting like New York, or America, shows how different the countries are. America is a metaphor for being free and having many opportunities, like how Lourdes opened a bakery. The setting influences how the character’s act throughout the novel. For example, Pilar gets along with her mother while in Cuba versus how she is always rebellious against her in America.


message 21: by Dacia (new)

Dacia (xodacia) | 8 comments Dacia Ochoa

In the novel, “Dreaming in Cuban,” Cuba centers the story and the setting. The country represents many aspects that shape the story and the characters in the novel. For example, Cuba holds a different emotion for each of the characters in the novel: for Felicia and Lourdes Cuba was their homeland, and of course there was minimal attachment-but it was also the place where they were poor, oppressed, and strained from their rights and what was theirs. For Pilar, Cuba was this amazing place-where her relatives resided, where she could belong. Cuba is bittersweet to the narrative because it holds factors like family that shape the book into the novel it is but it also holds memories that tarnish the happiness of the characters. The United States juxtaposes Cuba in the novel, however, because while Cuba holds something as sacred as family, the Unites States secures factors like stability and freedom-this is explicitly shown by showing that Lourdes owns a bakery and how the family has the ability to practice catholicism without the fear of being persecuted. Eventually, Pilar-too learns that the United States is the nation that establishes peace and virtue for her family even if Cuba is where her family and infant memories are.


message 22: by Kaleb (new)

Kaleb Joseph | 4 comments In Dreaming In Cuban the main setting of the book is in Cuba. During the novel the audience can learn the relationship most characters shard with the Island. For example in the novel Pilar moves to New York with Loudres who owns two bakeries and she is desperate to return home and be with Celia. Another example can even be Javier. Although he is not mentioned much in the novel he returns to Cuba and travels into the mountains and predicts that is where he will die. The audience can tell some characters mourn for Cuba while others try to escape from the memories that were created and seek freedom in the United States.


message 23: by ChedMichael (last edited Aug 24, 2018 08:26PM) (new)

ChedMichael Barreto | 8 comments ChedMichael Barreto

The novel of "Dreaming in Cuban" took place in both Cuba and Brooklyn. However, no matter where a character moved or stay, the Cuban Revolution's effect on the characters, which was separation within each other, stuck with them wherever they went. For example, Lourdes fled to Brooklyn for the purpose of escaping Cuba and searching for better opportunities. However, with her daughter, Pilar, developing a rebellious attitude over time Lourdes despised that because it made her think of her mother, Celia. Celia showed passion in supporting the Cuban Revolution and El Lider, but that disgusted Lourdes. While in Brooklyn, Celia and her family and her remaining family in Cuba are separated due to politics. With Felicia opposing the idea of Communism, she and her children try to live their own lives on Palmas Street. But, living in isolation causes Lourdes to choose the wrong path, as she heavily practiced santera magic and would eventually lead to her death. So, having a family divided because of different views from a political aspect, no matter where the characters were settled whether in Brooklyn or Cuba, conflicts between characters would still persist.


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