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Stereotyping – Latino Women

Stereotyping is a folly that almost everyone indulges in whether they realise it or not. Of course many try to stop this by educating themselves to be knowledgeable about worldly affairs but one can only equip oneself with so much information in ones lifetime. Cofer talks about the stereotype that follow Latino women no matter where they go. On the other hand, Eva Peron (Evita), portrays how Argentinean women can rise up in life and defeat the stereotype they face. Both Cofer and Evita have conflicting views of how one should beat he stereotype that they face.

Cofer feels that education is the best way a Latino woman can oust the stereotype of them being lower class citizens or as being easy. She realises that not every Latino woman has the same educational opportunities as she had and because of the majority of Latino women perpetuating the myth, the stereotype will go on. Many Latino women invite this stereotype to themselves as their behaviour and actions are of the result of their upbringing. Latino women think that it is normal to dress flashily or bare their skin.

Their culture allows them to do so as they are protected by traditions and laws of a Spanish/Catholic system of morality. The main rule in their culture is that “You may look at my sister, but if you touch her I will kill you. ” This system has made Latino women more open and daring. Once they go out of their cultural system, they practice the same actions which often tends to be misinterpreted as being easy. Some Latino women have used this as a way to advance themselves onto higher positions in the world just like what Evita did.

These women are not of the majority but almost all Latino women fall into the stereotype of being easy just because of what a few women has done. Evita is a typical example of how a woman can use her physical assets to gain higher positions in the world. Even though she is treated like a saint today, there is still a question of morality on how she has advanced herself. True she gave hope to the lower class but how she went about it is morally wrong. By treating her like a saint, it is almost saying that it is all right to use our body to advance yourself.

This is what Cofer is against. She feels that women should prove themselves and get out of the stereotype by using education to advance themselves. Many Latino women fall into the term “sexual firebrand” (348) because of the myth that follow them where ever they go. Some have resorted to submitting to the advances of opportunists just to retain their position in their jobs. Evita clearly shows that a woman can get anything she wants by being manipulative and submitting to physical pleasures.

Cofer actually has made progress by using her intellect alone and has managed to accomplish many things in life. She is a positive contributing member of society which sadly is not as recognised as what Evita contributed. While Cofer has actually contributed to society, what Evita really accomplished is really questionable. Other than raising the hopes of the lower class Argentineans that they too can rise from poverty, she did not give them anything valuable at all other than the spirit to fight for their rights.

I eel that in comparison, Cofer is the one who has contributed more to society as she is rallying for education as a way to advance oneself. Evita on the other hand is just perpetuating the stereotype that women should use their physical attributes to advance themselves. Both Cofer and Evita show conflicting views on how Spanish women should come up in life. While both might have their merits, a sense of morality should brings forth the question of what one should choose and whether to perpetuate or go against the stereotype that Spanish women face.

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