Trash

Trash

by

Andy Mulligan

Teachers and parents! Struggling with distance learning? Our Teacher Edition on Trash can help.

Trash: Part 2: Chapter 4 Summary & Analysis

Summary
Analysis
Grace begins narrating because Father Juilliard asked her to discuss José Angelico’s nature as man. Grace has been a maid of Senator Zapanta—the vice-president—for four years. To Grace, José Angelico was a “kind, gentle, trustworthy, and honest” man, and she thought it “impossible” that he would steal from Senor Zapanta. José Angelico’s wife and son had died years before. Angelico worked as a live-in houseboy in order to send his young daughter, Pia Dante, to school. When Angelico was taken, Grace was “very, very upset.” She went to find Pia Dante in the town where she boarded, but Pia Dante had disappeared. Grace doesn’t know what happened to Pia Dante, but she thinks Pia might have ended up on the street like so many other kids. 
Grace’s intervention into the narrative reveals important facts about José Angelico’s role as Senator Zapanta’s longtime servant. Zapanta’s refusal to let Pia Dante live with José Angelico hints at his malevolent nature, while Grace’s thoughts about José Angelico and his resolve to educate his daughter imply that Angelico is, by contrast, a good man. José Angelico and Pia Dante’s story demonstrates how poverty unjustly separates families and leaves poor children highly vulnerable, since they often end up on the streets.
Themes
Childhood, Poverty, and Injustice Theme Icon
Corruption, Power, and Theft Theme Icon