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To Come Back Again


To Come Back Again

Calvo, Carousel (2015) To Come Back Again. Masters thesis, Concordia University.

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To Come Back Again is a bildungsroman of two characters – Luis and Rowena. The concept of leaving and returning (balikbayan in Filipino) is a major theme in the story. The novel details both characters’ perspectives: Luis’ reluctant departure from the Philippines juxtaposed with Rowena’s desperation to enact her own departure. Luis’ story starts when he is sent off to live with his aunt in Vancouver. He leaves behind a developing relationship with Rowena, which becomes the impetus for his longing to return to his former home. In Vancouver, he starts to question why he had to leave Cebu and to ascertain his purpose in staying in Vancouver. This anxiety manifests itself in a recurring nightmare. The pull of not only Rowena, but also his barangay (village), stifles any new relationships he forms. Despite his reluctance to entrench himself in Vancouver’s cultural milieu, and despite the fact that the city itself has begun to influence his way of thinking and speaking, Luis begins to question his identity, which then casts doubt on his goal of going back to Cebu. Rowena’s story begins a week after Luis’ departure. As Luis was her only ally and the one person she thought would change her life, his leaving forces Rowena to come to terms with her own situation. She comes to question the idea of permanence. Upon meeting Mr. Park (an older South Korean man vacationing in Cebu), Rowena sees a relationship with him as a way out of her poverty. Both stories explore the ideas of migration, poverty, class hierarchy – Filipinos vs. Chinese- Filipinos – and family responsibility.

Divisions:Concordia University > Faculty of Arts and Science > English
Item Type:Thesis (Masters)
Authors:Calvo, Carousel
Institution:Concordia University
Degree Name:M.A.
Date:1 February 2015
Thesis Supervisor(s):Sterns, Kate
ID Code:979898
Deposited On:09 Jul 2015 14:27
Last Modified:14 Sep 2019 00:00
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