Who or what is the antagonist in the short story "American History" by Judith Ortiz Cofer?
As was mentioned in the previous post, Elena experiences ethnic discrimination from her African American classmates, who make derogatory comments about her appearance and ethnicity. While Elena is turning the jumprope for the other girls during gym class, they refer to her as "Skinny Bones" and begin to chant "pork chop," which is a popular dish among Puerto Rican families.
The story's overall atmosphere could also be considered antagonistic. The harsh winter weather, the unfamiliar city of Paterson, and Public School Number 13 all present different challenges to Elena. Her high school is particularly antagonistic and is the place where she experiences discrimination on a daily basis.
Eugene's mother could also be considered an antagonist throughout the short story. She is portrayed as a xenophobic and...
(The entire section contains 2 answers and 408 words.)
check Approved by eNotes Editorial