The Swinging Bridge Discrimination can be found in many different forms and it can happen to anyone. Some people are discriminated against their race, gender or age. Some people are discriminated by religion , culture, belief or how wealthy they are. Some people are even discriminated by their physical ablities or sexuality. Discrimination is a very ghastly thing and it is a major issue faced by the many of the characters in the novel The Swinging Bridge. The characters Mona Singh , Kello Singh and Muddie had encountered gender and race discrimination throughout the book.
Discrimination can be very hurtful and can effect many people physically , mentally and emotionally. Many characters in this novel faced many forms of discriminations in forms of gender and race. Especially the main character, Mona Singh who tells the story The Swinging Bridge. “I began to notice that the shopkeeper’s glances kept straying back to me again and again as he pottered around. I felt a bit uncomfortable at first, but than I decided to ignore the idiot. When I turned around suddenly to ask Da-Da something,…he rosed abruptly from his bar stool, ducked outside, and mentioned me to follow.. ove, quick sharp! “Get in de car and stay there, you little bitch. Flaunting yuhself up and down looking for a man. All yuh lil girl so damn ting with all yuh-self. Stay dey and keep yuh lil tail quiet , yuh hear? ” (Espinet 174) Mona was discriminated against what gender she is. Her father assumed that she was the one trying to impress the Shop keeper when he knows his daughter is not that kind of person. He thought that since she was a girl all she would want to do with her life is try to impress men, which was not true. Mona was a very hardworking girl who tried her best in everything she did.
Mona is a very smart but men in Trinidad tried to trick young girls who they thought could be fooled. “I heard a mans voice behind me . He was an ordinary working man… ““Miss, excuse mih, but how yuh mother keeping today? ”” , ““ my mother? Fine, thankyou””, and I moved to walk on… ““your mother…lend mih some money when ah was real hard up and as want to pay she back” … “ How much money do you owe my mother? ”” ““twenty dollars but I only have twelve with me…come leh we take a taxi and you could get the rest if the money””… “he was gripping my arm urgently. “you see, yuh waiting so long to make up yuh mind… Now yuh go get the two a we in trouble”” (Espinet 43-44) In this quote a man named Sunny tricked Mona into getting in a taxi with him. They reached a house near the cane field where she saw a lady who looked very scared and was telling her to run away. Lucky enough he got very upset with her and took her back in the taxi and drop her off somewhere. When she arrived home her mom was very scared that Sunny had tried to touch her , or even rape her. Many men in Trinidad and even around the world think that women can be tricked very easily.
They think that girls are useless , unintelligent and very vulnerable and that’s discriminations against gender. Men also thought especially in this book that they are the more powerful and dominant ones that control the families. “Gosine’s car parked in our yard. He was at the door, about to leave, but as he squeezed past me in the narrow doorway he spat the words”red nigger” into my face with such venom that I drew back in shock. No one heard him but me; we were locked in a secret moment .
Da-Da had nothing at first, but later that evening his rage was triggered by a small incident and he lashed out at me, a “ lil girl pretending to study but only studying man”. (Espinet 185) This quote represent again discrimination against gender. Gosine was the man who called Mona a “red nigger” why would Da-Da beat her for that. Da-Da should’ve confronted Gosine but since he is a guy it was not wring for him to say that , but since Mona looked at him Da-Da become furious thinking all Mona does is pretend to study and focus in school but really she only studies men.
I don’t think Da-Da is a good father to Mona at all and always thinks down upon her because she is the only girl. Da-Da thinks he is the most powerful and dominant person , especially when he is drunk but really men and women have the same amount of power and are both equal . People should always be treated respectfully no matter what gender, race or sexuality. “And how did he get aids? Promiscuous sex? Needles? Was Kello gay? So what if he had AIDS? Surely we weren’t such creeping, crawling hypocrites , inching along, looking over our shoulder every second for fear of what people would say ? ( Espinet 48) Kello is Mona’s older brother who had a wife and children. Kello realized later in his life that he was gay and unfortunately had sex with another male who gave him AIDS. Kello is scared to let anyone know that he is gay because many people will discriminate him because of his sexuality. Being gay is who you are and not because you choose to and many people wont be able to except that especially his father Da-Da. That’s why when he told Mona she should be there for Kello and not question him because he is in a very complicated situation. Now I understood the manic look in his eyes, the incendiary quality in his energy. God, this could not be happening. Kello was losing his mind; he would have to be monitored more closely. ” (Espinet 53). In this quote Mona discriminated her brother’s sexuality. She doesn’t understand how he became gay and couldn’t believe he is going to die. Kello and Mona parents think Kello is dying of leukemia but Mona know Da-Da doesn’t believe its leukemia. Mona could see how he is dying on his deathbed.
I don’t think she shouldve thought he was lost his mind but excepted the face her brother was gay …… Kello was always there for Mona when they were younger and his mom. “Inside Kello was shrieking for Pappy at the top of his lungs, while Da-Da’s rage continued unabated: “ is all yuh who have me in this trap!… I must kill priest to have all yuh like a blasted millstone around mih neck! ” (Espinet 21) … we saw his back then we heard nothing. Muddie peeped through a pinhole gasped and moved closer to the door as, with a great roar, Da-Da knocked Kello to the ground.
He was almost sitting on him. “yuh little bugger, you playing man for me! I go show you who is man today! ”(Espinet 22) Da-Da was very drunk the day this incident occurred. Da-Da was ready to beat Muddie and Mona but instead Kello stood up for them. Da-Da became very furious and went to attack Kello. Da-Da think since he is older than Kello is that he is stronger and more powerful. This is discriminations against age. Kello stood up for what he thought was right. Da-da was drunk almost everyday. Which makes Kello a lot wiser than Da-Da because he made the best decisions he could
Kello as a brother and son has always been ther for hsi family and so has muddie “Peering through the hole one day I watched Uncle Baddall trying to turn Muddie around, his arms holding her waist in a clinch from behind, rotating her with an iron lock until her head faced his squarely…squirming and wriggling in his grasp as Baddall bent and tried to kiss her. (Espinet 35)…. Muddie was making the cries of a small caught animal, Uncle Baddall was trying to bend his head to kiss her”. (Espinet 36) Uncle Baddall was also like …… “ I hated Muddie for letting Uncle Baddall touch her. Would she tell Da-Da?
She should tell Da-Da, and he should curse Uncle Baddall upside down. ” (Espinet 37) Mona discrrimated her mom against gender. Her mom didn’t let Uncle Baddall touch , he grabbed and and held her tightly so that she couldn’t let go Discrimination is a terrible thing that can happen to anyone, whether its got to do with race , reglion or gender. It can happen in real life as well as in novels , such as the Swinging Bridge. Many characters in this novel was face with discrimination which isn’t right. Mona, Kello and Muddie been through a lot in throughout the whole novel , which by the end of the book made them stronger as a person .