Woman Hollering Creek and Other Stories

Woman Hollering Creek and Other Stories

by

Sandra Cisneros

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Ixchel’s strict grandmother in “One Holy Night.” Abuelita blames her son, Uncle Lalo, for Ixchel’s pregnancy, since Uncle Lalo should be the one working the family pushcart, not young Ixchel. Abuelita is protective of her granddaughter, most likely because she has seen what can happen when teenagers misbehave—indeed, her own daughter (Ixchel’s mother) got pregnant at an early age and was sent to Mexico in order to hide from neighbors. Now, though, Abuelita finds herself dealing with the same problem on the other side of the border, and she’s forced to send Ixchel back to the United States to once again save face from shame and humiliation in front of neighbors. Even when Abuelita is most furious with Ixchel about her relationship with Boy Baby, she shows a certain tenderness, often sitting side by side with her granddaughter and teaching her to knit when the young girl must be taken out of school.
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Abuelita Character Timeline in Woman Hollering Creek and Other Stories

The timeline below shows where the character Abuelita appears in Woman Hollering Creek and Other Stories. The colored dots and icons indicate which themes are associated with that appearance.
One Holy Night
Love, The Joy of Life, & Interconnection Theme Icon
Loss, Longing, & Grief Theme Icon
Ixchel—an eighth grade Mexican-American girl—explains that it has been eighteen weeks since Abuelita, her grandmother, chased off a man named Chaq Uxmal Paloquín, whom Ixchel calls Boy Baby.... (full context)
Love, The Joy of Life, & Interconnection Theme Icon
Loss, Longing, & Grief Theme Icon
...the first. My mother took the crooked walk too, I’m told, and I’m sure my Abuelita has her own story, but it’s not my place to ask.” Abuelita, for her part,... (full context)
Love, The Joy of Life, & Interconnection Theme Icon
Feeling suddenly wise, Ixchel comes confidently back home, laughing at her newfound knowledge until Abuelita takes one look at her and asks, “Where’s the pushcart?” Scrambling for an excuse, she... (full context)
Female Objectification & Power Theme Icon
Coming of Age Theme Icon
...sex, Ixchel’s secret becomes obvious when her period never comes and her stomach swells. When Abuelita discovers her granddaughter is pregnant, she weeps and blames Uncle Lalo, who blames the United... (full context)
Cultural & National Identity Theme Icon
Coming of Age Theme Icon
Only her friends Rachel and Lourdes know about Ixchel’s pregnancy, and Abuelita wants to keep it that way. Consequently, she arranges to send Ixchel to live with... (full context)
Love, The Joy of Life, & Interconnection Theme Icon
Loss, Longing, & Grief Theme Icon
...refusing to “let [her] rest.” Not long after she arrives in Mexico, Boy Baby visits Abuelita’s house looking for Ixchel, but Abuelita chases him away with a broom. When the family... (full context)