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By: Judith Ortiz Cofer

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by

Arantxa Rivera

on 3 October 2013

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Transcript of By: Judith Ortiz Cofer

"American History"
By: Judith Ortiz Cofer
Project by: Arantxa Rivera

Hour: 3

Summary:
In this story there is a young immigrant girl from Puerto Rico who starts liking a boy from her school, Eugene. They become friends and everything in her life seems to be perfect until the unexplainable happens. That evening President Kennedy had been assassinated. She didn't care she was ecstatic that she would be going over to Eugene's house after school. Being greeted by his mother she soon discovers that being the way she is, is not accepted by Eugenes mother and she demands her to leave.
"She looked at me intently at me for a couple of heartbeats, then said as if to herself, 'I don't know how you people do it" (Cofer 301).
"'Listen. Honey. Eugene doesn't want to study with you. He is a smart boy. Doesn't need help. You understand me. I am truly sorry is he told you you could come over. He cannot study with you. Its nothing personal. You understand? We wont be in this place much longer, no need for him to get close to people- it'll just make it harder for him later. Run back home now" (Cofer 301).
These statements helped develop the theme because in these quotes it shows Eugene's mom judging this girl by the appearance of where she lives
Device: Foreshadowing- A writer's use of hints or clues to indicate events and situations that will occur later in the plot
Theme: Judging others causes pain.
"'You live there?' She pointed at El Building, which looked particularly ugly, like a gray prison with its many dirty windows and rusty fire escapes" (Cofer 301).
"'You are forgetting who you are, Niña. I have seen you staring down at that boy's house, you are heading for humiliation and pain' My mother said" (Cofer 300).
This is an
example of
foreshadowing because her mom is warning her that she will be humiliated at the boys' house and with that you can infer that in some way that is
exactly
what will
happen to her

by going
to
Eugene's house.

Like that saying

"Mother knows best"
Author's Device: Irony- Irony is when you think that something will happen but something else happens.
"Today was the day I visit Eugene in his house. He had asked me to come over after school to study for an American history test with him. We had also planned to walk to the public library together" (Cofer 299).
This is an example of irony because Eugene and her seem to be getting along well and you would think that maybe her crush might become more than just being friends because he invited her over for a study session (date) and you might be thinking ooooh this is going to turn into them becoming more than friends but instead Eugene's mom makes her leave without even getting to talk to Eugene!
The author created anger in the story by using foreshadowing and irony because as you keep reading you think that she's going to become closer with Eugene and they will become more than just friends or even just really close friends but once you get to what his mother says to the poor girl you become furious of how ignorant and judgemental a person can be by just looking at someones appearance.
Full transcript