I. Authors Biography
Carlos Bulosan is said to be one of the earliest and most influential of Asian American writers. 1 He was a Filipino born on November 2, 1911 in Pangasinan to a rural and peasant family in the village of Mangusmana located near the town of Binalonan. His family strived to make both ends meet to make a living and send their children to school like many other Filipinos at that time of economic turmoil; brought by the increasing wealth and power possessed by the elite. Carlos, committed to help support his family, went searching for a better life for himself, continued his education, and made the choice to travel to America with high hopes to reach his ambitions.
American is in the Heart is the autobiography of Carlos Bulosan, who begins his story by narrating his childhood life in his town Mangusmana. He lives alongside his father in a farm where they both work in. On the other hand, his mother lives in the city with one of his brothers and younger sister. Because of this living arrangement, Carlos has never met some of his older siblings. One of the sons Macario is said to be “the hope of the family”. They hope that when he graduates he will return home and find a teaching job to help support their family and pay their debts. He attends high school in another village, and because of this their family pawns their land one hectare at a time in order to compensate for his expenses. Unfortunately, things don’t go as the family hopes for and Macario loses the teaching job.
Due to the harsh economic conditions at that time, children like Carlos were working and doing what they could to help support their families. Carlos, at five years of age eventually moved to Binalonan to work in the fields. His salary goes to his mother for paying the moneylender, and to Macario’s schooling. When he isn’t working the fields, he is with his mother, assisting her with her barter business that