Kiss of the Spider Woman: Chapter Notes - Chapter 11




·         Second meeting with Warden, M still gave the Warden nothing on V however he convinced the Warden of V’s weakness as being attached to M and saying that M’s moving into another cell will loosen V up and talk. M also requested a lists of provisions for W to prepare to him to go back with bags of food to share with V.

·         V felt bad that he lost his temper earlier on, feeling guilty for his behavior.

·         M and V speaking openly about their friendship (attachment) and their feelings; explanations of their actions and behaviors towards each other. (affection)

·         M told V of the possible pardon which meant switching to other section of the penitentiary, moving into a new cell.  This made V really upset.

·         Continued storytelling – zombies. (the end)

·         V offered to give names of his comrades for M to go see after his released, however, M refused and insisted on V never to tell him anything.

·         They argued, M got upset, V tried to comfort M physically – patting, then massaging. This led to M asking for permission to touch V and making a move as V gave in.

·         They had sex.





·         Still strong bond between M and his mother, M was willing to betray his friendship with V to be with his mother as soon as possible. The supporting evidence of this is P.187-9 where M had his second conversation with the Warden about V.

·         M talks of his great bonds with his own mother P.203 comparing it to his relationship with V. “…My mom’s affection for me is, well, it’s the only good thing that’s happened to me in my whole life, because she takes me for what I am, and loves me just that way, plain and simply…like a gift from heaven.. the only tin that keeps me going, the only thing



·         M could be getting out, V stays. Outside could be more dangerous than inside.



·         M lies to V about the visits

·         M suggested the lying about a pardon of his behave claiming it would encourage V to talk which leads to motif – betrayal of their friendship. P. 198 and again P.199


‘Real’ Men vs. Feminine females

·         M bring back food playing the wife role, trying to please V like a woman pleases a man. P. 200

·         M crying seen as weak symbolizes femininity. P.215-6

·         “I feel like you really need me, so I can do something for you.” P. 217 V feels the want to take care of M, pleasing M like a man pleases a woman. M’s dependency on V as woman depends on a man to take care of her.

·         P.209 “the poor gives money to the rich one, the rich one asks the poor one for a handout and laughs at him, scoffs at the poor one and insults him for having nothing more to give, one phony coin.”  V’s personal thought shows his strong believes as revolutionary– masculinity.  And perhaps his past?



·         They had sex for the first time. P. 217-219

·         Built up of sexual a desire has reached its climax as they physically touched - V massaging M.

·         M then uses the opportunity and asked permission to touch V. P. 217 “Valentin… Can I touch you too?”

·         “It seemed like I wasn’t here… not here or anywhere out there either… like I wasn’t me anymore.”  P. 219 This also exemplifies as a way for M’s escapism.


Gaps/ Silences

·         Constant pauses and gaps during conversation illustrate uncertainty. P. 187-9 conversation between M and Warden. Dialog between M and V.

·         Ellipses used when M is angry or upset emotionally – crying.

·         Pauses when they are performing sexual actions. 

·         Molina, suddenly I’m… I’m all messed up … illustrates V feeling upset emotionally and physically.



·         M playing double characters – devoted to V’s friendship and affection yet has a role to spy on V and report back to Warden.


Story telling

·         Continue Zombies story

·         First wife Zombie had no choice but to kill the guy as she is not in control signifies the lost of control in M situation as he felt he had no choice but to betray V for the sake of his own mother by cooperating with the Warden. Leads to betrayal motif.  P. 211 “she still loves the guy and she does not want to kill him, but the order is implacable”

·         Also, the majordomo seen as a traitor, pretending to help the girl and on her side then turned out to be the witch doctor. P.208



·         M speaking constantly about death “I just want to die, that all I want” P. 216 could illustrates guilt towards V.

·         Perhaps foreshadowing his death in the future.




Power Struggle – role reversal

·         Between M and V – M seems to have gained power over V by making V feel guilty of his bad behaviors earlier as M still continues to be nice to him, share provisions with V. P.201 “Molina… I feel embarrass”

·         Furthermore, having told V the possibility of M moving cells had weakened V emotionally and physically. P. 204-5. “My stomach clenched after you said that” , “Molina, suddenly I’m… I’m all messed up” however, this can be seen that M planned it so he could weaken V and get what he really wants – affection and sex from V. M got what he wanted.

·         Between M and Warden – P. 197-200, Warden seems to be holding the power status – no name, called warden. M and guard speak to him with the word “sir” positioning the warden as higher rank. However, M seems to be in control as he holds the secrets, information wanted by Warden. Moreover, M uses this power to get what he wants – provisions , which he then shares it with V.




Zombie – Death, no power, no control also links to power and the repression in control throughout the book.





·         Still plays mother figure part, bring back food for V. However not as controlling, letting V choose what he wants and makes it himself. P. 200 “Each one fixes whatever he wants, that way I don’t aggravate you.” Also, reference to P. 214 “...critically ill patient is now out of danger, the nurse will keep watch throughout the night over his tranquil sleep”  M’s thought – imagine himself being a nurse takes care of a patient similar to him taking care of V.

·         He acquires power to get what he wants (sex and affection) from V by attacking V’s weakness of attachment to M himself.



·         V is now strong physically again however has soften himself emotionally, less male like. He opens up about his feelings and explanations of his behaviors towards M. P.202  “The only thing that seems to disturb me… because I’m exhausted, or conditioned or perverted… is that someone wants to me, without asking anything back for it.” And P. 216 “It’s time for us to be honest with each other, really, Molina I want to help you, tell me what’s wrong?”

·         Gave in to M’s needs and wants and his own needs and wants – SEX! P. 117-9

·         Friendship between the two characters has clearly developed as they speak more openly about their feelings than ever. Pouring of emotions. Moreover, as they got intimate by having sex illustrates the next step to their friendship.  




Zombie’s story setting – dark, scary. Drums playing, voodoo singing, light from loaded candles. As drums and singing beating faster and more furiously – building up tension. Then a sudden stop of everything as the leader enters: “A hurricane winds gusts through the palms, blowing out all the candles and the darkness is total, right at noon.” P.208 = the blowing out of candles signifies



Narrative Style/Structure:

There are different narrative styles and structures throughout the chapter:

1. Dialogue – Warden and Prisoner (M)

2. Dialogue between M and V, also the thoughts in their head.

3. M storytelling



Relation of Part to Whole(development):

Zombie story indicates a happy ending story unlike the rest of the storytelling that have prominent unhappy endings. This perhaps demonstrates that Molina has finally starting to see positive sides of situations.