How has the protest changed Carmel's perspective on the Chilean's?
Change will inevitably happen through an individual's lifetime, either by their outlook, attitude or actions. Carmel's first job made her closer to the Chileans. Her perspective changed throughout the novel as she became absorbed in the different culture. Carmel's curiosity about Chilean culture triggered a change.
In Carmel's section, she is presented with a job opportunity at a Chilean cafe. Carmel's first impression of Chilean workers, "Jeez the guy's a nutter...!" as Carmel said to herself while she was staring out of a grimy window of the cafe. Colloquialism is used to portray how Carmel feels about Chilean workers; it also makes it clear for the reader to understand Carmel's feelings. McCarthy uses an exclamation mark to convey Carmel's thoughts about Juan's personality. "I gotta get out of here..." This demonstrates that Carmel was uncomfortable in the situation. High modality emphasises her anxiety at the moment.
Carmel is curious to understand what the eagle in the painting symbolises, and she wonders about its importance to the culture, this is an analogy that represents her curiosity about Chileans. The job at the cafe has brought her closer to Chilean culture.
Jude notices a change in Carmel, by her growing in confidence towards customers. "...She was laughing more easily and didn't get so frustrated when someone called a joke or tried to tease her". This clearly displays the perspective of another character towards Carmel's change, and lets the reader know that Carmels' changing perspective has affected those around her, and it has changed their perspectives also.
In Jude's section Carmel is involved in a deep protest towards the commemoration to the lives lost due to the Chilean government laws. At the protest "...the mood was up, spirits were high" This was the general feeling of all the people who had attended the protest that night. Carmel felt good to be there supporting a cause that was much different to what she normally would follow. Even though she felt so good about her attendance, she had some regrets "I shouldn't be up here", Carmel hissed "...I'm not Chilean, I don't even know Spanish" This use of interior dialogue expresses how Carmel's mood changes. After the protest Anton asks Carmel "how did the protest go?" "Oh terrific", Carmel replied. This shows juxtaposition used by the composer to convey how her mood has changed significantly yet again. Also it is parallel to her first apprehension about Chilean's and their culture.
In another conversation between Anton and Carmel, Anton finds himself in a position where he is forced to speak up about his thoughts regarding the protest, he really speaks his mind with Carmel "...I mean realistically Carmel" Anton said quietly "you wouldn't have got involved with this if you hadn't been friends with Jude, would you?" McCarthy has used this moment as an opportunity to let the reader get an idea about how Anton feels about the protest, and a question was used to convey this. After this comment made by Anton, Carmel replies with annoyance and frustration "so?" she shrugged. "What's that got to do anything? Don't you get influenced by other people?" she said with her mouth open, her eyes wide and troubled, and one hand in mid-air about to make a point" Carmel's response to Anton 'question' symbolises how strong and passionate Carmel feels about her attendance at the protest, and towards the Chileans and the culture.
Going back to Carmel's job at the cafe, she wouldn't have accepted the job if it wasn't for Jude's enthusiasm and confidence towards Carmel's job opportunity. As Carmel first entered the cafe she was already feeling nervous and quiet scared, Jude introduced her quite enthusiastically and with much admiration. "This is my friend Carmel, Juan. Isn't she gorgeous?" Carmel felt embarrassed but it was a great first impression for Juan to see Carmel. She again felt quite uneasy and with Jude's confidence, she really didn't have a say about feeling nervous or cautious when meeting this Chilean man. It is quite obvious that McCarthy has used Jude as the catalyst for Carmel beginning her journey with experiencing a new culture. It's clear that Carmel's perspective about Chilean's has changed, at first she didn't know much about the culture, and didn't even know about how to speak Spanish. At the cafe Carmel's curiosity about the culture, with Jude as being the main catalyst, causes Carmel to embark on a change about how she sees Chileans. McCarthy has used the cafe to bring Carmel closer to the culture and it has introduced the feeling of change.
At the protest we observe how Carmel's perspective changes greatly. She sings in Spanish, participates in the protest activities and her passion and genuine feeling towards Chileans is somewhat recognizable. McCarthy uses the conversation between Carmel and Anton to reinforce this feeling of Carmel's passion and her changed perspective towards Chileans and their culture.