The main theme Isabel Allende’s short story ‘An Act of Vengeance’ is that of Vengeance and the various approaches Dulce Rosa takes. The main aspect of the character is her female dominance in a predominantly male world. You can see this when she expresses her independence after she suffers rape. When the incident occurs, Rosa’s neighbors advise her to move away from the area and go and live with her Godmother where she can start again with nobody knowing her situation. However, she refuses to leave the town and continues on with her life within the ruins of her father’s home. Planning a way to keep the promise she had made to her father, and get revenge on the man who turned her world upside down.
Allende also proposes to one of the age-old theme of love and heartbreak; however she also incorporates the idea of revenge beside it. Dulce Rosa is on a mission to avenge her father by killing the man that killed him, Tadeo who she plans to murder for her father, however we discover that she unexpectedly begins to fall in love with him. With the theme of vengeance running through the story, the stereotypical solution would be to murder Tadeo for her father; however she ends up killing herself instead. The aftermath of her death affects Tadeo deeply because he decides to give up on love and redemption altogether, so in a way she managed to avenge her father in the sense that, despite Tadeo remaining alive, he will forever live in his own misery.