By, Francisco Jimenez
The Circuit Setting
Characterization of Fancisco
Francisco is a young Mexican who's family illegally crossed the border to California in search of work and escape from poverty. Francisco loves school, and enjoys learning. He is a smart boy. " I continued adding new words and definitions to my note pad. I also wrote other thing I needed to learn for school and thins I wanted to know by heart, like spelling words, and math grammar rules. I carried the note pad in my shirt pocket and, while I worked in the fields, memorized the information I had written in it. I took my librito wherever I went" (103). This quote explains Francisco's love of learning. He carries around his notebook to memorize new concepts not only for school purposes, but for himself.
Francisco's conflicts in this book are internal and external. Francisco's internal conflict is throughout a good portion of the book. This conflict is his schooling. This is a conflict because at first, Francisco knew close to no English at all, and all of his teacher taught in English. For example, "By then end of the day, I was very tired of hearing Miss Scalapino talk because the sounds made no sense to me. I thought that perhaps by paying close attention, I would begin to understand, but I did not. I only got a headache, and that night, when I went to bed, I heard her voice in my head" (18). This quote shows that Francisco struggles at school. His teacher speaks only in English, so Francisco, a speaker of fluent Spanish, is greatly confused in class. Francisco's external conflict is work. Work days are long and physically demanding. For example, " I was completely soaked in sweat and my mouth felt as if I had been chewing on a handkerchief" (78). To add on, " I felt sick to my stomach. I dropped to my knees and let the jug roll off my hands. I remained motionless with my eyes glued on the hot, sandy dirt" ( 78). These excerpts create a vivid image of the conflict Francisco has to endure while working. Furthermore, " Instantly, I felt fire as the salt stung the scratches on my skin. Then as the liquid quickly cooled, my hands felt like ice. I could not go on" (72). This quote provides more details to just how painful and hard this work was for Francisco. He experienced this while trying t prove himself, by picking cotton. Throughout this book, Francisco experiences both internal, and external conflicts.