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Quinceaera, the celebration of womanhood at the threshold of girlhood is a popular trend in Latino societies in America. Sometimes the American sweet sixteen celebrations and the celebration for a girl's coming of age, her "quince" is celebrated together. The overlapping of various traditions, social implications and the attempt to be in touch with ones roots, living in a foreign nation; is portrayed through the use of ambivalence in Julia Alvarez's book - Once upon a Quinceaera.
Episodes from other "quinces" covered by the author as part of her research work for this book and also tales from her own adolescent years in America has been weaved in brilliantly. A comparison is drawn between the actual custom what it represents and the present day celebrations, complete with limousines, DJ's and extravagant cakes. The blending of different cultural practices that marks a woman's "coming of age," which is the main purpose of organizing a Quinceaera is brought to light by Alvarez through this book. The tumult of emotions that is associated with adolescence has been captured through the various emotions portrayed by the various characters of the story. The author identifies with the various circumstances through the flashbacks to her own adolescent years in America. [Latinaya, 2007]
Through her book Alvarez highlights on the attempt of immigrants to stay in touch with their roots and culture. Quinceaera, which celebrates a woman's coming of age, her of official transition towards womanhood is marked by lavish celebrations. ...
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