Die Heuning Pot Literature Guide
© 2014 Shmoop University, Inc. All rights reserved.
 

Analysis

Literary Devices in Bless Me, Ultima

Symbolism, Imagery, Allegory

Setting

Folks are often tempted to box Bless Me, Ultima in as a regional novel, a Chicano novel, or a southwestern novel. But by now you've probably realized that it's so much more than that.Still, the reg...

Narrator Point of View

Antonio "Tony" Márez narrates the novel, telling the story of his early youth. Luckily for us, the story he tells is a good one. Antonio's childhood was filled with magic, murder, mysticism, and l...

Genre

At the heart of Bless Me, Ultima sits a story about a boy growing up. It's all about Antonio undergoing rites of passage, learning what it is to be a man, and trying to suss out what it is that he...

Tone

Have you ever been faced with two choices? It could be anything: Which guy should I ask to the dance? Do I want cheese or pepperoni? Instead of just going with your gut, do you ever take some time...

Writing Style

Now, the term "wandering" can get thrown around as a negative comment for a writer who really doesn't know where his story is going. That's not what we mean here. Anaya knows exactly where he wants...

What's Up With the Title?

On the surface, the title seems to refer to Antonio's last request of Ultima before she dies. He flat out says, "Bless me, Ultima," and Ultima blesses him and his life to come (22.656). Of course,...

What's Up With the Ending?

The very last line of Bless Me, Ultima warrants a bit of exploration. Ultima has blessed Antonio, she has died, and he has buried her owl under the forked juniper tree just like she asked him to. H...

Tough-o-Meter

If you're fluent in Spanish, the tough-o-meter rank comes way down. If you're not, it can be a bit of work to follow exactly what's being said all the time. That doesn't mean you can't follow, thou...

Plot Analysis

A Grande EntranceAntonio Márez is a young man on the brink of discovery and the brink of starting to figure out what it means to grow from a boy to a man. This journey truly begins when Ultima—c...

Booker's Seven Basic Plots Analysis

Bless Me, Ultima defies easy categorization. It's clear that it is a coming-of-age story, and in the end Antonio has found at least some of what he set out to discover. But Antonio isn't your typic...

Three-Act Plot Analysis

Bless Me, Ultima doesn't fit perfectly into the stock and standard three-act narrative structure. There's something more cyclical about the way the book unfolds. There's a lot of leaving and return...

Trivia

Although the book celebrates the history and culture of New Mexico, the world premiere of the 2012 movie version of Bless Me, Ultima took place in El Paso, TX. But hey, it's right on the border. (S...

Steaminess Rating

Antonio knows about Rosie's and the prostitutes that work there. He hears talk about it, and he believes that the women and men there are committing acts of sin. When he sees Andrew there, it upset...

Allusions

Catechism of the Catholic Church (17.352-410) plays a major role in Antonio's life and in the narrative of the book, but in chapter 17, Anaya lays out specific questions and responses of the Catech...
Advertisement
Advertisement
back to top