What is the main theme in Bless Me, Ultima?

Bless Me, Ultima explores the difficulty of reconciling conflicting cultural traditions. In the end, Anaya suggests that a person can draw from several cultural traditions to forge a more complex and adaptable identity.

What are 4 themes found in Bless Me, Ultima?


  • Revenge.
  • Fear.
  • Identity.
  • Men and Masculinity.
  • Fate and Free Will.
  • Memory and the Past.
  • The Supernatural.
  • Coming-of-Age.

What is the theme of Bless Me, Ultima quizlet?

A major theme in Bless Me, Ultima is the transition from innocence to experience. As a six-yearold boy, Antonio is innocent to the ways of the world; however, this quickly changes when he witnesses the killing of Lupito.

Is Ultima good or evil in Bless Me, Ultima?

Throughout the book, the relationship between Ultima and Tenorio depicts good and evil through the development of juxtaposition. In the novel, Ultima is represented as an owl which embodies goodness while Tenorio is represented as coyotes which epitomize evil.

What does the golden carp represent?

The golden carp represents a magical religious order not connected to Catholicism. The golden carp legend offers its own brand of wisdom, comfort, and moral guidance.

How does the death of Lupito change Tony?

After he witnesses Lupito’s death, Antonio becomes preoccupied with sin, punishment, and the loss of innocence. Antonio’s confrontation with ideas of good and evil manifests itself in his use of religion to try to understand the world.

What does Antonio’s dream symbolize?

This gradual transformation, traced in dreams, reflects Antonio’s growth from childhood to maturity. His dreams also offer him a rich and variable set of images and symbols with which to understand his own life.

What are some symbols in Bless Me Ultima?

Bless Me, Ultima Symbols

  • Ultima’s Owl. Ultima has an owl that follows her everywhere and becomes a symbol of her mysterious power.
  • The Golden Carp. Antonio discovers the golden carp at a time when he is starting to doubt his mother’s Catholicism.
  • The Atomic Bomb.
  • The Virgin of Guadalupe.

What does Ultima’s owl symbolize?

Ultima’s owl represents her life force and the power of her religious mysticism. The owl sings softly outside Antonio’s window at night. Its song symbolizes Ultima’s comforting presence in Antonio’s life and the protective power of her magic.

What is Ultimas power?

Ultima has strange powers and shares a deep connection with the earth. She befriends Antonio and becomes his mentor and guide. Ultima symbolizes the mysterious powers of the indigenous peoples as well as the spirit of the land itself, although she is misunderstood by many to be an evil witch.

What does the presence of the river symbolize in Bless Me, Ultima?

It represents life and it surrounds the town. At the beginning of the novel, the river is defiled by the blood of Lupito. The water of the river represents the sins and impurity of the town itself.

What is the moral of the book Bless Me Ultima?

An emphasis on thinking independently about moral decisions pervades Bless Me, Ultima. Antonio’s progress toward moral independence is the main marker of his maturity and development throughout the novel. Antonio’s struggle to reconcile the complexities of his experience with his religion leads him to conclude that he must make his own decisions.

What is Ultima’s message to Antonio?

Ultima teaches him that the most difficult questions about life can never be answered entirely by a single religion or cultural tradition. Antonio has questions about evil, forgiveness, truth, and the soul, questions he can answer only for himself.

Does Ultima die at the end of the novel?

The battle between these two characters perpetuates the majority of the plot in the novel and, although both characters die at the end, Ultima’s goodness and Tenorio’s evilness are maintained. However, as Antonio himself discovers, good and evil are not so easy to distinguish.

What is the role of Tenorio and Ultima in the novel?

From the start, Ultima is described as the moral compass for the novel, protecting her community from the curses of evil witches. Tenorio, on the other hand, takes his place as Ultima’s arch-nemesis who shares his wicked daughters’ penchant for cruelty and evil.