Dominicana Summary & Study Guide

Angie Cruz
This Study Guide consists of approximately 37 pages of chapter summaries, quotes, character analysis, themes, and more - everything you need to sharpen your knowledge of Dominicana.
This section contains 498 words
(approx. 2 pages at 400 words per page)
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Dominicana Summary & Study Guide Description

Dominicana Summary & Study Guide includes comprehensive information and analysis to help you understand the book. This study guide contains the following sections:

This detailed literature summary also contains Quotes and a Free Quiz on Dominicana by Angie Cruz.

The following version of this book was used to create this study guide: Cruz, Angie. Dominicana. New York: Flatiron Books, 2019.

The novel opens in the Dominican Republic in the 1960s. The country’s dictatorial leader, Rafael Trujillo, was recently assassinated, and the resulting power vacuum has begun to cause political instability. Ana Cancion is the protagonist and narrator. In 1965, she is 15 years old. Her parents force her to marry 32-year-old Juan Ruiz. Juan and his family have accrued a moderate amount of wealth and plan on immigrating to the United States. Ana’s family hopes to immigrate to the United States after Ana and Juan. Ana does not love Juan, but she feels obligated to obey her parents’ wishes.

Soon after marrying, Juan and Ana move to New York City. There, they live in a small apartment with Juan’s brother, César. Juan often beats and rapes Ana, and Ana believes that it is her duty as a wife to endure such treatment. Ana manages all of the household tasks, such as cooking and cleaning, and Juan rarely lets her leave the apartment. Ana discovers that Juan is having an affair with another woman, but Ana does not feel that she can confront Juan about this matter. She soon wishes to flee back to the Dominican Republic to escape Juan’s abuse, but she feels that it would be a betrayal to her family not to help them immigrate to America. Thus, Ana remains in New York City with Juan.

Ana soon discovers that she has become pregnant by Juan. Around the same time, she befriends a Dominican immigrant woman named Marisela. Marisela is kind and comforting to Anan, and she is Ana’s only source of personal solace in New York. One day, Marisela asks Ana to steal money and valuable from Juan. Ana reluctantly does so, and she later discovers that Marisela was merely manipulating her for personal gain. Eventually, Juan temporarily returns to the Dominican Republic to handle some business affairs. During that time, Ana forms a closer rapport with Juan’s brother, César. Ana begins taking English lessons, and César helps her sell food in order to make money.

Eventually, Ana and César fall in love, and they decide to run away to Boston together. However, Ana changes her mind when she learns that her mother and younger brother will soon be arriving in New York. Juan returns to New York. Ana decides to stay with Juan because she thinks it is the best thing for her family. Ana’s mother and younger brother arrive and move in with Ana and Juan. Later, Ana gives birth. Eventually, Ana’s mother witnesses the physical abuse that Juan inflicts on Ana. Soon after, Ana, her mother, her brother, and her newborn child all leave Juan permanently. They find temporary lodging and begin looking for a new residence in preparation for the arrival of the rest of the family.

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This section contains 498 words
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