Judith Coffer narrates in her essay the struggles she overcome when she moved from the country she was born
Judith Coffer narrates in her essay the struggles she overcome when she moved from the country she was born, Puerto Rico, to live in the United States. The standards of beauty she knew in Puerto Rico did not fit the standards in her new place, New Jersey. Cofer emphasizes in a few topics relating to her skin color, size, looks, and how she struggle with this changes during her childhood, and adolescence. Coffer describes in her essay, that in the animal world, the most colorful creatures are in most cases the most poisonous. This can be represented to state that even though humans and animals have different skin colors, yet, humans are more prejudice when it comes to differed skin color. Cofer also talks about how we are more vulnerable to feel discriminated by the way we look. Being Latina, I relate to the story of Judith. I believe that although men and women experience racism, sexism, woman is more likely to be discriminated, unfortunately by the same gender.
In our life, appearance plays an important rule. Society judges a person by appearance rather than personality and skills. Cofer explain in her story how her size made an negative impact in the sports field, where she felt that her tiny body could not compete to be part of a sports team, compare with the big girls. Often, women feel pressure to fit the society “beauty standards”. For instance someone who is too skinny and bony don’t fit the standards for some cultures to be “pretty”, over average leaves woman out of standards as well. Frequently, woman would change her appearance by changing hair color, doing extreme diets, ultimately modifying their bodies, in most cases to complied with nowadays term for “beauty”. For instance, at times we are the most critics of ourselves, pointing out at every physical ‘defect” or disadvantage we feel is puts as in disadvantage. Therefore, if we feel in anyway “handicapped” we exclude ourselves from others, and allowed society to look at our appearance rather than show our personality and perhaps, ones talents.
Judith mentioned in her story how she became an “exotic” women to those men who survived the struggles to be popular in school and whom now where trying to think and be more liberal in all aspects. Cofer, mentioned that after dating and living a “social life” she discover “I had brains for sure and some talent in writing” Judith discover that she needed stability in her life, focusing in her studies and in her talent, writing. I enjoyed how she concludes her story saying “These facts were a constant in my life. My skin color, my size, and appearance were variables-things that were judged according to my current self-image, the aesthetic values of the times, the places I was in, and the people I met”. This is a strong statement, it reflects how we are judge differently by people, depending the place and people we are surrounded by. At the end, everyone would have different judgement of ourselves, however the most important and valuable judgment is the one we have for ourselves. Self worth is the primary security we must poses to overcome any type of racism, sexism, or discrimination made by society, and even ourselves. After all the judgemental struggles Judith overcome in her life, she learned from those who saw her with respect, as an individual, and use that criteria to grow her self worth in her adult life.