L.A.'s Traffic Causes Trouble

Topics: Social class, Sociology, Gender role Pages: 3 (971 words) Published: March 31, 2005
Whether you're stuck on the 405 freeway during rush hour, on the 15 freeway heading back from a long-weekend vacation, or driving through the busy streets of Hollywood, traffic on the highways and streets of Los Angeles can often be a hassle. In Dagoberto Gilb's short story Love in L.A., first published in 1986, the troubles of traffic are experienced first hand by our main character Jake. Jake is a common fellow with a steady occupation who is merely trying to make his way to work through the busy streets of Hollywood. As he is working his way through the piled traffic, not paying complete attention to the road in front of him, Jake crashes into the back of a Toyota. In the midst of exchanging information with the driver of the Toyota, Jake finds himself attracted to the female driver, whose name is Mariana. Jake attempts several times to ask her out for some coffee or breakfast; however his persistent attempts were not successful. The two drivers continue to exchange insurance information, however Jake not having any valid insurance gives false information to Mariana, and the two of them go their separate ways. In this short story, the author demonstrates the effect of gender roles, Marxist criticism, and new criticism in his writing. Written in third person limited, this short story is a vivid portrayal of gender roles. Looking in the perspective of a gender critic, one might say that the character of Jake is very persistent. At first, Jake asks Mariana if she would like to go have breakfast and talk it over. After Mariana turns down his offer, Jake attempts to take her out again and says, "Some coffee then?"(629). However, his second attempt is yet again rejected. Then, Jake thinks to himself that she might be married and says to her, "You're not married are you? Not that that would matter that much to me. I'm an open-minded kinda guy." (629). Still very eager to take her out, Jake is unsuccessful to change the mind of Mariana. However, through this...
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