Physical and Emotional Distances
One of the central themes in Reyna Grande’s memoir The Distance Between Us is that of the distances both physical and emotional that separate people. As Grande relays the story of her difficult and fractured youth in Mexico and then in Los Angeles, she ultimately argues that even once seemingly insurmountable physical differences are breached and crossed, the emotional distances that have cropped up in their wake can sometimes prove impossible to bridge.
During…read analysis of Physical and Emotional Distances
Abandonment and Betrayal
One of the most profound themes in Reyna Grande’s memoir is that of abandonment and betrayal. In painstaking detail, Grande recounts the feelings of isolation, betrayal, sadness, anger, and longing she and her siblings felt after their father—and, later, their mother—abandoned them for “El Otro Lado” as they pursued work in the United States. Over the course of the book, Grande focuses on the deep rifts sudden desertion or disappearance creates within families, ultimately…read analysis of Abandonment and Betrayal
Forgiveness and Recognition
Though Reyna’s narration throughout The Distance Between Us is rife with pain, confusion, and indeed resentment, it ultimately ends on a note of forgiveness. When Reyna finally forgives her dying Papi for all the pain he has inflicted on her and her siblings, it is because she recognizes that without him, she would not be who she is; as she holds his hand in hers and sees that they are the same shape, she…read analysis of Forgiveness and Recognition