House on Mango Street essay

1079 WordsNov 5, 20135 Pages
Growing Up in Poverty In the novel, The House on Mango Street by Sandra Cisneros, a young confused girl has trouble finding herself as she grows up in the Latino section of Chicago. Esperanza and her family move to a small, crumbling red house in a poor urban neighborhood. Determined, she decides that someday she will leave and move somewhere else and totally forget everything about Mango Street. Throughout the novel, Esperanza significantly matures sexually and emotionally. The many stories of her neighbors gives a full image of what Mango Street is like and showing the many possible paths Esperanza may follow in the near future. However towards the end, she begins to write as a way of expressing herself and as a way to escape the…show more content…
At first, she was a strong woman, but after her forced marriage she spent most of her days looking out a window and hoping for escape. Explaining the interaction between both sexes of children on Mango Street, Esperanza states that the boys and the girls live in separate worlds. Even at a young age, divisions between gender are present among the characters. By living in separate worlds, they are demonstrating real life situations that are already occurring in society at that time period. All in all, unfair gender roles in society is another important theme illustrated in the beginning of the novel. Lastly, the third theme portrayed in the first few chapters is society and class. Expounding the looks of her house, "Out back is a small garage for the car we don't own yet and a small yard that looks smaller between the two buildings on either side" (4). The description of Esperanza's home contains clues about their social class. Obviously, her family lives in poverty by living in a poor quality house in the impoverished Latino section of Chicago. When a nun from Esperanza's school examines her house, she states, "You live there? The way she said it make me feel like nothing. There. I lived there. I nodded" (5). She feels immensely judged by the woman who must live in a much higher social class. The way she says the word there tells Esperanza that there is something wrong with her home.

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