Throughout history male dominated societies have been prevelant. The primary structure of the household has been patriarchial for the most part. Some women have accepted this condition; others women, however, find strength and pride in their sex and have thus ignored the norms of male domination. In her nove, Like Water for Chocolate, Laura Esquivel comments on feminism and society’s instated role for women. Through the story’s protagonist, Tita, Laura depicts a women in her traditional role and shows shows how she deters from what she is expected to do and how she is expected to act and embraces life in the manner she wishes to do so.
Ultimately, Laura Esquivel utilizes Tita’s role as a women, cooking, and her nience, Esperanza, to depict the triumph of feminism. Laura instills the traditional role of the women in Tita as a symbol of her feminity and strength. Though Esquivel;s motive is to show how women triumph in society, she uses the very stereotypical view of women that has imprisoned them to their condition as the tool in which they utilize to liberate themselves of such a condition; it is through Tita’s role as a motherly and house keeping figure that shes finds her identity, strength, and ability to influence others.
Luara esquivel shows that “Tita’s doman was the kitchen where she grew vigorous and healthy on thin corn gruels. This explains the sixth sense tita developed about everything concerning food” (Esquivel 5). Though women have been often degraded to only being useful in their motherly and house keeping roles, Tita embraces it and it serves as the source of her livelihood. This glorifies feminine strength in that it brings to the forefront the importance of this role in society.
Furthermore, Esquivel comments “ That world was an endless expanse that began at the door between the kitchen and the rest of the house, whereas everything on the kitchen side of that door, on through the door leading to the patio and the kitchen and herb garden was completely hers—it was Tita’s realm” (Esquivel 5). Here, esquivel shows that the stereotypical motherly and house keeping role is not nececerily a represeive and degrading condition; if approached in the correct manner, this role can serve as a source of identity and power.
Food allows tita to find her identity and serves as the tool in which Tita is able to affect and influence her surroundings and the people around her. “On her the food seemed to act as an aphrodisiac; she began to feel an intense heat pulsing through her limbs. An itch in the center of her body kept her from sitting properly in her chair. She began to sweat, imagining herself on horseback with her arms clasped around on of Pancho Villa’s men…” (esquivel 48).
In society today, there is a doubled standard for one’s sexual nature; for men, having an active sexual life, sometimes with multiple partners is often seen as masculine and strong, while being a female and openly sexual is highly condemned. Here, however, Tita’s food It serves as the means to which Gertrudis is able to embrace her sexuality and ultimately leads to her partaking in what would be criticized as sexually promiscuous. This symbolizes the rise of feminity and the elimination of such a double standard.
Not only does Tita’s food serve as a symbol of the power of female sexuality but it also reveals the importance women to society, apparent when Esquivel writes “In addition to the delicious meals she brought him every day, another factor helped bring about his amazing recovery…” (Esquivel 210). Tita’s food brings about recovery and livelihood in John. This expresses Womens’ role in upholding the wellbeing of society. Tita’s ability to magically heal others through her food only further glorifies women and feminine triumph. Tita upholds and perpetuates the triumph of femininity through her neice, Esperanza.
Tita feels that her greatest accomplishment was “Having brought off the wedding between Alex and Esperanza” (Esquivel 240). After having risen above mama elena’s oppression and embracing her role as a women, she wants to pass upon this sense of liberation to her niece. Through the marriage tita brings about between Alex and esperanza, Esvuival emphasizes the lasting effects of the feminism and cements female triumph in society. She reveals that an oppressive role for women can be alleviated and transformed with the presence of the female passion, sexuality, strength and influence.
Ultimately, Esquivel expresses that feminity has triumphed and has brought about a permanently uplifiting condition for women. In her novel, Laura Esquivel sets up a scenario of female repression and then follows with feminism and its triumph. Through her protagonist, Tita, Esquivel shows that the traditional role of women can be turned to a source of strength, identity, and influence. Laura esquivel emphasizes women’s worth and value in society and breaks down sexist stereotypes and double standards. Ultimately, LArua esquivel reveals the triumph of feminity through Tita’s passion, character, and strength.