Makina, the Epitome of Determination

You do not get to choose the circumstances of your birth, but you are in control of how you want to live your life and what kind of person you are. This all relies on your mentality and determination . Strong perseverance and focus can really take you far in life.


In the novel Signs Preceding the End of the World, Yuri Herrera tells the story of a woman named Makina who is making an expedition from Mexico into the United States in search of her brother. The excursion however is being done illegally through smuggling and naturally is filled with plenty of dangers. Makina is ready though. Even though she has to deal with all the shady people and activities involved with smuggling along with the overhanging threat of border policemen, Makina is determined she will succeed.

She is very strong willed and independent individual. Makina is someone who is extremely dependable and you know that she will always do her best to keep her word. She is the kind of person you go to when you need help and can expect a solution from her. For Makina’s case, this was her whole life.

There is a part in the story where Makina and a companion ran into trouble with border patrol and the companion told her to escape without him, but because of her previous experiences with people, she thought he was asking for help and went towards him. She was then shot at and grazed by a bullet.

 “Makina wasn’t used to having people say Run away.” (49)

Image result for helping people


Makina’s overpowering sense of independence and determination are her most powerful assets. Despite all the inherent dangers and risks of crossing the border, she packed very sparingly for it. The only survival oriented items she brought were a flashlight and few provisions. Instead she packed lipstick, clean panties, and a blouse for partying among other things. Makino is very confident and knows exactly what she wants to do.

“She was coming right back, that’s why that was all she took.” (52).


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