Sonia Sotomayor is currently a federal judge of the United States of America. In seeking to impact change across the world, Sotomayor penned her memoir connoted My Beloved World where she highlights her early life, career, as well as the challenges that she faced in getting to where she is now. This review aims to examine Sotomayor’s memoir with a view to evaluate some of prevalent thematic concerns that transcend her life trajectory. The review further provides a personal response regarding Sotomayor’s memoir as it relates to personal challenges experienced in the scope of my learning trajectory.
Theme of Poverty
Poverty has transcended the scope of varied individuals’ success trajectory at large. While Sotomayor had studied under such tough and challenging conditions, she highly valued hard work, education, as well discipline courtesy of her mother’s teachings. Sonia recalls the book her mother bought her, Encyclopedia Britannica. Sotomayor recounts that such books were a rarity in her hometown (Lee, 2013). Sotomayor similarly faced the challenge of having to deal with drug addicts that had taken over her housing projects. Even amidst such dire constraints, Sotomayor managed to top her class and graduated as valedictorian. The justice awards Sonia’s grandmother with specific credits to enhance the scope of childhood protection services from broader spectrums (Lee, 2013). While the extended credits from the government served to enhance the prevalent operations of the childhood protection services, the system still lacked a proper system. She ascertains that such services benefit from the incorporation of diversified networks whose core tenets increasingly relies on friends, as well as family to empower the young at large.
Theme of Racism
Sotomayor features as one of the leaders who are keen on the fight against racism, as well as other similar vile aspects (Lee, 2013). As a Hispanic, one of the few minority groups that reside within the United States, it should be noted that she faced a wide array of diverse challenges more so when it came to accepting the opportunities that presented themselves along the way. Sonia recounts that at one time while still a student at Princeton University, a series of letters would oftentimes appear in the school newspaper castigating students based on creed. Students such as Sotomayor in this regard were asked to grant their learning opportunities to some other students that were perceived as worthy of education in America at the time (Lee, 2013). The Puerto Rican lady justice reserved a strong resolve, as well as clarity when it came to declaring several prospects affiliated with affirmative action. She decisively laid out a suitable plan to excel amidst such tense hostilities that pervaded the American institutions by redefining her listening, as well as observation skills (Lee, 2013). This subsequently led to the creation of a suitable platform that would see her rise in her chosen career to become lady justice of the free world with a view to nip such aspects of bureaucracies from corroding the system.
Theme of Seclusion
Sonia recalls residing in the projects while she still depended on her mother’s income. Sonia in this regard greatly criticized solitary life aspects that reserve the potential to make even impose more stringent challenges onto the lives of individuals. Sotomayor recounts that solitary life greatly limited her exposure (Lee, 2013). For instance, she illustrates that she had never heard tale of Ivy League schools until a friend of hers brought her up to speed on the subject. Following her wake of joining Princeton, Sonia came to the unsettling realization that she lacked a wide array of communication and language skills owing to the seclusion of classics in her past language programs (Lee, 2013). This particular stark realization compelled her to dedicate long hours and hard work towards reading literature.
Theme of Broken Family
The theme of broken family plays a considerable role in terms of laying out the foundation that led to the attainment of success by Sotomayor. Sotomayor, the daughter of a Puerto Rican father who drank presents an unparalleled description of a typical broken family life and how this has aided in the shaping of her success trajectory (Lee, 2013). Following the wake of her father’s passing, Sonia Sotomayor illustrates an increasing amount of sanity as she later on seemingly extends the decision for moving on without the father to her family members. However, Sonia reserves an increasing amount of resentment towards her mother. Certainly, several reasons underpin her decision to become so distant with her mother (Lee, 2013). Sotomayor recounts that her mother decisively opted to cut us off from the rest of the familial relatives. Sonia’s feelings of deep aggravation towards her mother largely stem from the fact that her mother locked herself in a room to mourn her father shortly after he had passed on. To this, Sonia illustrates that she was unable to understand her mother’s actions until such a time as when her mother finally came out with the truth.
Theme of identity
As a staunch leader whose views on affirmative action are astute and dire, Sonia is driven in part by a series of self evident principles that focus on the development of a suitable societal platform that is devoid of malice, racism, as well as other vile elements that harbor the potential to impose certain difficulties pertaining to the coexistence of people (Charles et al., 2011). Her memoir is a reflection of the ideal qualities we often long for in the course of our survival such as traditional connections, sense of belonging, as well as a better perception of one’s heritage (Lee, 2013). As a Latina, Sotomayor’s memories feature a series of her traditional practices including, but not limited to; holding parties with food, dancing, music, as well as poetry.
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Sonia recounts that on occasion they engaged in séances as is the Latina tradition (Alcoff, 2010). All the aforementioned attributes seemingly ascribe to Sotomayor’s sense of familial ties, ingrained traditions, as well as elements of her heritage that defines who she is from several diversified dimensions (Charles et al., 2011). Not surprisingly, the future lady justice has never once abdicated her traditional practices. She asserts that accepting who she is has enabled her to gain a new perspective of herself (Alcoff, 2010). She ascertains that in seeking to incorporate all features pertaining to her roots into her repertoire, she has finally managed to know herself. She has thus applied this concept in overcoming her erstwhile challenges and built on her strengths.
From a personal standpoint, I think that Sonia Sotomayor’s memoir features among the best of written autobiographies. A critical analysis of the memoir, especially the prevalent challenges that face a myriad of youth over the course of their learning trajectory categorically match the similar social issues that continually undermine our education. According to a personal perspective, I opine that several issues that served to derail Sonia’s learning progress mirror a wide array of issues that several students face to date. Constraints brought on by finances, as well as racism still pervade the society in which we live. I opine that Sonia Sotomayor’s resolve amidst such horrific challenges endows in me the courage and will to pursue my ambitions to the latter. Reading her memoir has taught me a series of important lessons pertaining to the potential of listening and making astute observations.
The present paper analyses diverse thematic concerns covered in Sotomayor’s memoir in a bid to ascertain a series of challenges faced by the lady justice over the course of her life trajectory. A personal response further seeks to derive the existence of similarities that transcend the challenges faced by Sonia Sotomayor and present students in varied schools. In seeking to analyze her memoir effectively, the report discusses a range of five thematic concerns including, but not limited to; theme of poverty, broken family, identity, racism, as well as seclusion among many others that serve a similar purpose. Suffice it to say, Sonia Sotomayor is a well established federal judge that operates within the confines of stringent principles whose core tenets reside within the realm of accountability, commitment, integrity, as well as transparency. Her solid stand against racism makes her a global world leader.
- Alcoff, L. M. (2010). Sotomayor’s reasoning. The Southern Journal of Philosophy, 48(1), 122-138.
- Charles, G. U., Chen, D. L., & Gulati, M. (2011). Sonia Sotomayor and the Construction of Merit. Emory LJ, 61, 801.
- Lee, R. K. (2013). Sonia Sotomayor: Role Model of Empathy and Purposeful Ambition: Reviewing My Beloved World by Sonia Sotomayor (2013).