Breaking Down Barriers In Francisco Jiménez’s “The Circuit”

984 words - 4 pages

In Francisco Jiménez’s The Circuit Panchito has a hard life. He does not a live in a home, or sleep in a bed, nor does his family own furniture. In addition, Panchito does not have access to a full year of education and because both he and his family do not speak fluent English he has limited learning in an English teaching school. his ability to learn. Despite the fact that Panchito has many things going against him like the absence of a sound home atmosphere and of a proper education he has many gifts that help to defy his circumstances. He has the aptitude to work tenaciously and cordially and enough humility to ask for help. In spite of his rough living conditions, Panchito broke down the barriers put in his way.
The lack of a safe home environment, one of the obstacles Panchito faces. When they lived in Fresno, he and his family lived in an old garage, separate from the large main house of their employer. The windowless walls strained “to support the roof full of holes”(Jiminéz 58). In addition, Roberto, Panchito, and their father “sle[pt] outside under the trees” (58). Because of the lack of any plumbing or furniture, they took showers underneath a waterhose and they “[ate] dinner around some wooden crates,”(59). The absence of a proper home environment also speaks for his family’s financial situation. If they cannot afford a home, one could wonder how they can properly support their children. Their severe economic status could also explain their children’s lack of an education.
Panchito faces the absence of a full education, he and his brother do not go to school for the entire year, limiting their abilities. “It was Monday, the first week of November. The grape season was over and I could now go to school”(60). Not only does he miss the first half of the year, but Panchito also has to catch up all of his missed work and remember his limited English vocabulary every time he returns. In the story, when he first gets to school he “ had not heard English for months”(60). When he finally understood what people say to him, his “first instinct was to answer [them] in Spanish” (60). Panchito attended a school that teaches in English and the fact that he has trouble with the English language hindrances to his future. “I opened the book to page 125. My mouth was dry. My eyes began to water. I could not begin. ‘You can read later,’ Mr. Lema said understandingly” (62). Because he missed a lot of the school year, Panchito had a great disadvantage. His difficulties with reading, speaking, and understanding the language could prevent Panchito from success.
In spite of his hindrances, Panchito rose above his surroundings and became a hardworking person. Everyday for roughly three months Panchito got up in the early morning and...

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