The Feast of the Goat Themes & Motifs

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Hyper-Masculinity and Sexual Violence

Underpinning Trujillo’s self-conception and his dictatorship is an exaggerated masculinity. This hypermasculinity flavours every action of the regime. The myth Trujillo constructs around himself is grounded in this machismo. He presents himself as the supreme lover, who any Dominican woman would be grateful to have “deign to fuck them,” and he presents himself as a patriarch, the Father of the Dominican Republic (50). The same machismo is present in sexually-charged rhetoric of the regime and the disdain Trujillo has for anybody who seems too womanly or intellectual. He even judges his sons for not being manly enough, comparing them to Porfiro Rubirosa, who Trujillo calls “that walking cock” (21). In this way, the novel shows how masculinity is the central hierarchical category for the Trujillo regime: one’s worth is based on masculinity and sexual prowess.

The loss of machismo therefore becomes a great...

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This section contains 2,809 words
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Buy The Feast of the Goat Study Guide
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