Essay On Stones For Ibarra

968 words - 4 pages

Adelita Lopez There are many different cultures, beliefs and diverse people around the world; this short story Stones for Ibarra brings together two totally different worlds, that of the Everton's and the "townspeople". The Everton's are an American couple looking to settle down in this little abandoned town. Both of these worlds teach each other many different things and influence each other in every way. The Everton's are viewed as somewhat of superior figures and the townspeople feel subordinate to them. Even though there is a great social difference between these two worlds they learn to cope and accept each other. In this small town religion is a big part of the townspeople's lives. Here priest, curanderos (witch-doctor), bishop, and any other "servants" of god were held and viewed as an elite group. In this story I noticed how all of these priests... this elite group actually took advantage of their positions. They allowed the Everton's to be a part of their luncheons, private celebrations and so forth. These social gatherings were supposed to be for those only closely affiliated with the Catholic Church yet the priests felt the authority to include the wealthy Everton's. Also the priests... felt themselves superior to the people of the town of Ibarra. For example in pg.139, a deaf girl walks into one of the luncheons to greet the priest and he, as a form of greeting, does not bother to get up to show respect instead he simply sits there and offers the girl his hand to kiss. This act itself shows how this group of "god servants" place themselves at a higher position than the rest of the town. It is very hypocritical of the priests to act as higher peoples. Aren't we all, in the eyes of god, equal? Why is it that these priests assume that simply because they are at the position which they are they should be superior? This story Stones of Ibarra tells many events where the priests... have their own social gatherings, at the expense of whom? The poor humble town people who barely make it day by day? There is also another gathering that happens between the religious groups, they get together to celebrate the day of the Saints. This is strictly a religious event for sole Catholic believers yet the Everton's who aren't even religious are there! By their lack of participation in the conversations going on we are able to see how out of place they really are. For example it isn't until the bishop mentions something about visiting in Rome that Sara and Richard actually participate. On pg. 141 it is said, "Now Richard and Sara had something to say, of stones and drains and arches, for they, too, were once in Rome." The religious groups in small towns like Ibarra are always caste as superior to the town people. There is a story within this novel about a young priest whose future was secured by his parents. They were a very poor family so they wanted to secure a better future for their son. When their son was a very young age his father purposely cut off his right hand, as mentioned in page 142; the boy missing his right hand couldn't really do anything else. Therefore this boy was practically forced to hold this religious office by will of his father whom committed such an act. The religious priests and so forth aren't really what they portray themselves to be; I noticed this by all the events that went on in the town and the padres really showed who they were. The padres took advantage of their positions by taking the donated money of the town and doing away with it in such wasteful ways. They know that the humble people of Ibarra don't really have much to offer, so why is it that they would hold feasts and luncheons with other religious members every so often? Aren't the servants supposed to be humble and not be greedy nor take advantage of others? The way which these padres behaved really bothered me because they are not the ideal people to be interpreting gods words when they aren't even living by god's will and ideas. By taking the towns money and using it for their "luxuries and pleasures" they are sinning, showing acts of greed. These padres aren't the best people suited to be telling us how to differentiate between right and wrong. By including the padres of the town the author conveys the point of how gullible and simple minded the people of Ibarra really are. That is why the title Stones of Ibarra, in my opinion, represents the people of this small town. Their attitudes toward the world, life and their town. The people of this small town are like stones, they are very hard to get through to when trying to change their ways but can also be very gullible (padres) when it comes to custom and tradition. I believe that stones represent their stiffness and their neglect to change for the world or to change their small cultural town. Those people are simply a big town of stones ignorant to the world outside of them which is why they worship figures such as a padre or a wealthy foreigner that come from elsewhere, like the Everton's.


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