Bless Me, Ultima Questions and Answers
by Rudolfo Anaya

Start Your Free Trial

What is the significance of Florence's death in "Bless Me, Ultima"?

Expert Answers info

David Wisar eNotes educator | Certified Educator

calendarEducator since 2019

write318 answers

starTop subjects are Literature, History, and Social Sciences

Florence in Bless Me, Ultima is an essential character because he is one of the few in the book who has no faith. Antonio is introduced to the idea of doubt through the experiences he encounters in the novel, but Florence is the one who puts into words the questions he often has about both the Roman Catholic Church and his quasi-pagan experience with the Golden Carp. Florence is often ridiculed and made to be an outcast because of his atheism, but he takes much of it in stride—even becoming like a martyr during the catechism classes, suffering for his lack of faith.

Florence in chapter 17 brings up to Antonio the doubts he has in the religion of the Church. Florence’s mother died, and his father drank heavily. His sisters are whores at Rosie’s brothel. Florence has faced many hardships in his life, and as a result, he had more doubt that Faith. Florence brings up the fact that all the suffering of the world seems unfair if there is a God because the first sin was simply desiring...

(The entire section contains 3 answers and 868 words.)

Unlock This Answer Now


check Approved by eNotes Editorial

munarriz eNotes educator | Certified Educator

calendarEducator since 2017

write49 answers

starTop subject is Literature

check Approved by eNotes Editorial

dymatsuoka eNotes educator | Certified Educator

calendarEducator since 2007

write3,287 answers

starTop subjects are Literature, History, and Math

Further Reading:

check Approved by eNotes Editorial


chekka | Student

In "Bless Me, Ultima" Florence is a metaphor for Jesus. His death was symbolic of Jesus' being crucified.

Everything Florence did in the book was synonymous with Jesus' preachings and teachings. Jesus went against everyone's faith, as Florence did.

There is one passage in which Florence and Tony have arrived late at the church, and the priest punishes Florence by making him stand in the center aisle of the church. Florence is described as calm and angelic.