Brokeback Mountain : Characters

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  1. Joe Aguirre

    Joe Aguirre is the foreman of the sheep operation who assigns the work on Brokeback Mountain to Ennis and Jack. He becomes aware of the sexual relationship between the two because he watches them through binoculars.

  2. Alma (Beers) del Mar

    Alma del Mar is Ennis’s wife. She and Ennis have two children together, but the marriage is not a successful one. Alma finds out that Ennis and Jack are involved in a sexual relationship, and she and Ennis drift further apart. She works at a low-paid job in a grocery story and knows that Ennis will never make enough money for her to quit. Eventually they divorce, and Alma remarries, to a grocer in Riverton.

  3. Ennis del Mar

    Ennis del Mar comes from Sage, Wyoming. When he was six, his father showed him how to fight back against his bullying elder brother. But then both his parents were killed in a car accident,and after the age of about nine or ten Ennis was largely raised in poverty by his older brother and sister. It was a tough upbringing. After dropping out of high school, he drifted into ranch work, which he does on and off all his life. He has few other prospects. When he meets Jack Twist he is already engaged to Alma Beers. He marries her and they have two daughters, Alma Jr. and Francine. Some years later, they divorce, but Ennis, although he likes to be with Jack, fears that if they were to live together, they would become victims of anti-gay prejudice. He is unwilling to take the radical risks that such a venture would involve and makes the excuse that he cannot take much time off work to go on trips with Jack. He remains deeply fond of Jack, however, and after Jack’s death he unsuccessfully tries to get the family’s permission to scatter Jack’s ashes on Brokeback Mountain. He keeps the two shirts he found in Jack’s room, one on top of the other—one was his and the other was Jack’s—on a wire hanger in his trailer, under a picture of Brokeback Mountain, a tender tribute and sign of what his friend had meant to him.

  4. Jack Twist

    Jack Twist grew up on a small ranch in Lightning Flat, Wyoming. Like Ennis, he dropped out of high school and had no real job prospects. Nor did he have a good relationship with his father, even though they have a love of bullriding in common. Jack used hisenthusiasm for rodeo and bullridingto get out of Lightning Flat as soon as he could. He meets Ennis when they both work one summer on Brokeback Mountain. After that, he marries a Texan girl, Lureen, and settles down in Childress, Texas. They have one son. But Jack cannot forget the good time he had with Ennis on Brokeback, and comes to visit him in Wyoming a few years later. After they restart their relationship, it is Jack who pushes for something more permanent with Ennis, and entertains notions that they might get a small ranch and live together on it. Jack’s financial position is better than Ennis’s, since his wife inherits a farm machinery business from her father. Jack takes up a managerial position with the company. He also has an affair with a married woman in Texas and, as Ennis deduces from something Jack’s father says after Jack’s death, appears to be having some kind of liaison with another man, a rancher in Texas. Jack may have been killed by local men because of such a relationship, Ennis thinks, although he does not know for sure.

  5. Jack C. Twist

    Jack C. Twist is Jack’s father. In his youth he was a well-known bullrider but never took any interest in Jack’s progress in the same activity. He was a distant father to his son and subjected him to harsh punishment as a boy. He thinks the reason Jack wanted his ashes scattered on Brokeback Mountain is because the younger man thought he was too good for his family and did not want to buried in the family plot.

  6. Lureen Twist

    Lureen Twist is Jack’s wife. She is a Texas girl whose father runs a farm machinery business. After her father dies she takes over the business and shows a good aptitude for it.

  7. Jack Twist’s Mother

    Jack Twist’s mother has kept Jack’s room in their house in Lightning Flat exactly as it was when he was a boy. After Jack’s death, she allows Ennis to go up to Jack’s room.

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