Kiss of the Spider Woman

by Manuel Puig

Start Free Trial

Where can examples of ellipses be found in Puig's Kiss of the Spider Woman?

Expert Answers

An illustration of the letter 'A' in a speech bubbles

In Kiss of the Spider Woman, the author uses ellipses to develop a closeness between the characters.  As the enotes summary notes, the book focuses on two main characters in prison.

In order to pass the time, Molina describes in great detail to Valentin a movie he once saw. Although the movie is not named directly in the story, it is recognizable as the classic Hollywood movie Cat People, which was released in 1943. (enotes summary, Kiss of the Spider Woman)

Ellipses are often used to create a thoughtful narrator.  They create a pause that forces the reader to stop and consider.  Since it interrupts the flow of the writing intentionally, it is like a conversation.  People often stop when talking for emphasis or to search for a word.  Therefore the use of ellipses makes the writing more intimate.  The reader searches for what was left out.

The use of ellipses in Kiss of the Spider Woman is established right away, on the first page.

The shape of her face, it’s … more roundish than oval, broad face, broad forehead, pronounced cheeks too when they come down to a point, like with cats. (p. 1)

In this book, the conversation between the two characters is intimate.  They spend hours together, passing the time in talking about things like the old movie described above.  The ellipses make the conversation seem more real.  Most of the times they are used are in these close conversations between Valentin and Molina.

[It’s] a question of believing, and at times I’m convinced that I’ve kept something of yours with me, too…and that I’ve never lost it… But then sometimes, no, I feel there’s nothing here in this cell except me…all alone…

-Yes… “me … all alone …” Go ahead. (p. 179)

As you can see, the two commiserate with each other and come to understand and share each others thoughts.  So ellipses are used throughout the book.

Read more of the enotes summary here:

You can search inside the book here:



Cengage, Gale. "Kiss of the Spider Woman.", 2012. Web. 07 May 2012. <>.

Puig, Manuel. Kiss of the Spider Woman. New York: Knopf, 1979. Print.

Approved by eNotes Editorial Team