In the Time of the Butterflies Essay

684 Words Dec 28th, 2012 3 Pages
Butterflies and Moths For decades, the Dominican Republic was ruled under the dictatorship of Rafael Trujillo. His harsh ways destroyed the chance for freedom, equality, education, and happiness for the citizens. In the novel, In the Time of the Butterflies, by Julia Alvarez, the Mirabal sisters, Patria, Minerva, Dede, and Maria Teresa, politically take a stand in hope to fight for their country. They were Las Mariposas, “the butterflies,” the strong sisters of the face of rebellion and leadership fighting against the moths, the political army of Trujillo. Butterflies and moths, creatures alike, yet different in significance, illuminate the different opposing sides that underline the struggle of the Dominican Republic. Early in the …show more content…
The paths of butterflies and moths cross when Pena turned from the devil Patria once saw picking the wings off butterflies, to a boy of shame for doing so (217). “This poor blind moth couldn’t resist my light” (217). This shows that the butterflies were making an impact, changing people with their words and love, where as the moths were hopeless due to Trujillo’s uncertainty as a leader. Before the moths were together in large numbers blocking the road with darkness, but due to Las Mariposas strength and determination, the light has shown through. The light that the sisters held became superhuman status, they were a household name serving time in jail for the cause of justice. Although, “It would hardly have been seemly for someone who had challenged our dictator to suddenly succumb to a nervous attack at the communion rail” (259). This illuminated the fact that people expected them to be brave, strong, and stand up for the whole country against the government. “Was it for this, the sacrifice of the butterflies?” (318). After the sisters’ death, the country begins to prosper, and freedom seems within reach. The battle between the butterflies and the moths was one like tug of war, pulling with strong force for each of their political sides. The butterflies let go of the rope to make the dictator fall; they sacrificed themselves for the greater good of the country. As Dede made her way home from their family’s house, a moth was attracted to the light that was

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