May Day Eve By Nick Joaquin Summary?


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The short story, May Day Eve, by Nick Joaquin carefully and brilliantly depicted the status Filipino women had during in the past. In this still seemingly patriarchal world, we are somehow forced to believe that men are superior and that women are just subordinate to men. This ideology was even more highlighted in the past, where women were totally deprived of the necessary rights that men had always enjoyed. In the story, the vital issue of marriage, wherein women are forced to marry men, was particularly portrayed.
Women had lost the capacity to decide and fulfill their own desires, making their lives almost meaningless. Agueda in the story had died miserably because her life was molded into something she didn't wish. She was forced to marry Don Badoy Montiya because the latter had a tremendous desire for her. Her whole life was spent grieving for the situation she can't escape.
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An irony surfaced in the latter part of the story: Doña Agueda was telling her daughter about a devil she saw in the mirror on a May Day Eve, while deep inside she means the devil to be her husband.
The plot of the story is complicated because the author had deviated from the normal flow of a story. A person, upon reading this story, would immediately sense a strong air of melancholy that is somehow radiated in the story. This development of Agueda's character further shows the ______ of the status of women as ______. Badoy, on the other hand, was a strong-willed young man, who just came from Europe when he met Agueda. It was the defining incident that clearly portrayed the inner anguish of Doña Agueda in her marriage to a man she never loved. Men like Badoy had a seemingly irresistible power over the society especially to women like Agueda, enabling him to have her in the end. Agueda was a beautiful and brave young girl who despised men like Badoy. In this light, Badoy in the story was depicted as a representative of men abusive of their superior status. The theme couldn't have been as apparent and evident if the point of view had not been that of a female. This kind of tone appeals well to the emotions of the readers, inciting in them the right attitude towards the theme of the story. This statement shows Agueda's utmost disgust in the dominance of men over them. He had fallen deeply in love with her, despite her obvious loathness for him, and had sworn to have her no matter what. This irony had made the story effective for the reader's understanding of the unfortunate situation Doña Agueda was undergoing because of Don Badoy's dominance over her. The complexity of the plot invokes the reader to think deeper and analyze the story so that he may relate to the characters and clearly understand the underlying issues within the story.

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