Helena María Viramontes, "The Cariboo Café"


1. From the start of "The Cariboo Café," the narrator pinpoints the characters as "displaced people." What, first, is meant by the description? In what ways are the characters displaced, and how does the storyteller make the reader share that sense of displacement?

2. The point of view of "The Cariboo Café" is fluid in its movement in and out of several different perspectives. Identify the various voices and explore the content that each relates to the reader. What is the relationship among the perspectives?

3. What is the nature and function of the family in "The Cariboo Café"? In what ways is the status of the family singular to the culture of the story, and how much does this family have in common with more-traditional definitions of family?