Essay Example on Exploring Invisible Identities: Unpacking Our Complex Selves

Paper Type:  Essay
Pages:  5
Wordcount:  1343 Words
Date:  2023-09-30

Discussion on diversity usually entails visible identities in terms of socioeconomic status, biological gender, ethnicity, or race. Invisible identities occur due to current versions of ourselves crumbling from societal characteristics. As personalities are not independent of each other, it crawls into each orifice of people's body and intertwines with our different identities malignantly. There is no box that I could check on the ethnicity section of forms since I am white, from Brazil but not a Latina per se since I do not speak Spanish. Considering invisible identities, the purpose of this essay is to describe media representation of my identity and to determine the validity of the presentation.

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The song "Girl of Ipanema" illustrates part of my identity, which demonstrates a paradigm of a golden teenage girl. In the book "Revealed: The Real Girl from Ipanema," lyricist Vinicius described his motivation saying, she was "a mixture of flower and mermaid, full of light and grace, the sight of whom is also sad, in that she carries with her, on her route to the sea, the feeling of youth that fades, of the beauty that is not ours alone—it is a gift of life in its beautiful and melancholic constant ebb and flow" (Pentleton).

The song addresses the beauty of a normal girl who is insignificant in a lot of ways but was a gem who attracted the attention of all the individuals wherever she passes. "Girl of Ipanema" focuses on the girl with the rhythm of her gait and golden complexion, causing the speaker to portray her as the most beautiful thing he has ever seen (Rogers 68). From Jane the Virgin, Latinos are described as having strong family relations which are right concerning my identity (Grell 40). Family ties in Latino families are strong. For the character of Jane, the family is everything, and it is essential in the show. It portrays the strong family relations present in my family.

However, the song misrepresents my identity on another level. I am not tan and tall like the song describes the Brazilian girls or how the media portrays them. The press usually describes Latina girls as half-naked during Carnaval in Rio de Janeiro. On my part, I do not speak Spanish or fit in the Latina stereotype. The stereotypical and biased paradigms of Latino Americans include representing them as not intellectually inclined as their American counterparts.

Particular caricatures which portray a negative stereotype include illegal immigrant, snazzy entertainer, gangster, and overly sexual character. According to La Pierre, the media describes Latinos as "poor, coming from low-socioeconomic status, and lazy." (Rivas and Saenz 1). For the better part of my life, the stereotypes are not a clear depiction of my world. It is only until the recent encounter that I felt the invisibility of my identity. Although I am a Latino American, I have the same experiences growing up like

Most individuals stereotype individuals based on their ethnic origin. For instance, I am considered a Latina because I come from South America. However, I come from Brazil, but I do not speak Spanish, which does not concur with the stereotype associated with Latinas. Considering the television series Jane the Virgin, Jane Villanueva is an extremely inspired graduated student who mistakenly got artificially inseminated with the baby of her boss during a routine checkup.

The racial stereotypes associated with Latinos from television include Latinos as the largest ethnic minority in America, very religious, lower class, sex/lover symbols, criminals, or comedians/comics (Grell 37). The TV characters based on research done by Rojas in 2004 determined that they do not portray the population of competent, rich, and smart Latinos in the United States (Grell 37). Exploring the label of Latinas as employed waitress, Jane is addressed as a waitress, and it angers her. She snaps as says, "So if I wasn't in college, I'd be just a waitress." (Grell 39). Jane is perceived as having a “stereotypically Latino job.”

Furthermore, there is also a stereotype depiction of individuals as outsiders since they are immigrants (Grell 41). As an immigrant, I am perceived as a foreigner because I was not born in the United States. On the other hand, I do not speak Spanish, and I was born in Brazil, which counters the portrayal of otherness through language that is racially predominant to many Latino-Americans. The stereotype of foreigners explains the comment made by my friends, explaining that I have no understanding of the experience of living in the United States. In this regard, not all individuals born in Brazil are bound to speak Spanish because the direction the lives of people take is different.

Personally, I feel my identity is invisible because people refuse to see me as Brazilian. I realized a huge part of social interaction occurs in darkness, with individuals showing stubborn resistance to recognizing significant elements of each other's identity. I was born in brazil and have spent the better part of my life in America. I do not speak Spanish, and although I am from South America, I am not tan and tall as the media or the song portrays Brazilian girls.

Social blindness has rendered marginalized ethnic and racial groups deficiently visible. Culpable ignorance stems from the different forms of cooperation which exhibit severe forms of social blindness, which creates the need to repair and denounce the blind spots linked to people's social gaze. Over the years, I developed strategies of resistance fighting social blindness and invisibility.

Additionally, a particular experience made me feel like I have been surrounded by reflections of twisting glasses that make me see parts of my imagination I had never previously fathomed. I used to see myself as a regular white American until a friend at a group conversation at a relaxed gathering mentioned that, "I wouldn't know because I'm not white" when discussing the experience associated with growing up in America. Incredibly, it hit me right there that someone perceived me according to my race or ethnicity.

My mirrors of distorting glass became much visible as it was the first and only time anyone made a remark connecting me with my Brazilian roots. However, I believe my friend's comment was due to our previous conversation that she found out I was Brazilian and not American. The disparity occurring between the projection of those around me and self-perception creates the idea of identity invisibility. My true identity as a Brazilian is invisible to my friends and only becomes apparent after they have a sense of who I am.


Conclusively, the media through the movies and television shows poorly represent the Latinos. Yet, I feel my identity is invisible because people refuse to see me as Brazilian because of how white I am and their lack of knowledge of my ethnic background. I do not speak Spanish, and although I am from South America, I am not tan and tall as the media or the song portrays Brazilian girls. The stereotype of foreigners explains the comment made by my friends, explaining that I have no understanding of the experience of living in the United States. Ultimately, my identity is minimally represented in the media since most of the presentations are based on stereotypes.

Works Cited

Grell, Caroline. "The Fight for Equality: The Role of Latino Stereotypes in Jane the Virgin." Cinema and Television Arts: Elon University,

López, Vera, and Meda Chesney-Lind. "Latina girls speak out: Stereotypes, gender and relationship dynamics." Latino Studies, vol. 12, no. 4, 2014, pp. 527-549.

Pentleton, Mark. "The Girl from Ipanema." Mark Pentleton, 2017,

Rivas, Adrian E., and Berlinda Saenz. "Pop Goes La Cultura: American Pop Culture's Perpetuation of Latino Paradigms and Stereotypes." Ursidae: The Undergraduate Research Journal at the University of Northern Colorado, vol. 6, no. 3, 2017.

Rogers, Rachel. "The Song Style of Antonio Carlos Jobim: An Analysis of Four Songs." Master's Theses, vol. 596,

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Essay Example on Exploring Invisible Identities: Unpacking Our Complex Selves. (2023, Sep 30). Retrieved from

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