Estevan and Esperanza, the Guatemalan couple Taylor meet in Chapter Seven, serve a pivotal, and transforming role, showing her the ugly world outside her own experiences, and providing her with a greater look at the world. Esperanza is portrayed as a tired, damaged woman, who isbarely living?. Estevan, in contrast, is more robust and idealized, being the one man who is significant to Taylor, and theagent? for Taylor’s acceptance of men. Although, on the outside, Esperanza and Estevan seem like very different people, went through the same horrible past together, and had to make a choice that would seem impossible to make to people in our society. .
After Esperanza tries to kill herself with a bottle of baby aspirin, Estevan goes to Taylor, and eventually tells her the story of their past. Estevan’s story finally establishes the details easily assumed during Esperanza’s first interaction with Turtle. Esperanza had indeed lost a child, but it had not died, as expected, but kidnapped. Estevan and Esperanza were part of a teachers? union, which were likely involved in something political, because most members only knew the names of 4 other members, and they had to work in secret. Esperanza’s brother and two friends had been killed, and their daughter had been taken away. Ismene was held hostage asbait?, because of the knowledge they held of the names of the seventeen other members in the union. The government decided they were more valuable alive than dead, forcing them to chose between their own child, and the lives of 17 union members.
The choice that Esperanza and Estevan had to make was especially hard, because it was they had to choose between their hearts and their heads. At first, the problem seems like a no-brainer, to save your own flesh and blood, no matter the cost, but as you dig into the logistics of the predicament, the problem becomes more complex. If they went after their daughter, they would be giving up the lives of 17 other people, just for the chance at saving one life.