The House On Mango Street Discussion Questions 1. In the House On Mango Street, Esperanza is talking about how she has lived many different places in her life. “We didn’t always live on Mango Street. Before that we lived on Loomis on the third floor, and before that we lived on Keeler. Before Keeler it was Paulina, and before that I can’t remember” she said. That quote tells you all the places she has lived, but it doesn’t tell you why Mango Street is different. The reason Mango Street is different is because it is their house. They own it, but all the other houses they had rented. . In the House on Mango Street, Esperanza tells you what she had imagined owning a house would be like, and what her house was actually like. “This was the house papa talked about when he held a lottery ticket and this was the house Mama dreamed up in the stories she told us before we went to bed. But the house on mango street is not the way they told it at all” She said. This quote tells you that their family had a dream house, like a house they saw on T. V. but they are disappointed in the real house they got because it was nothing like their “T. V. house”. 3.
In the story the storyteller never tells her name, but you know that she is a daughter in a family of 6. She doesn’t say directly how she feels about moving, but I can tell she doesn’t like it much, but it has become a part of life. “By the time we got to Mango Street we were six- Mama. Papa, Carlos, Kiki, my sister Nenny and me” she said. Also “They always told us that one day we would move into a house, a real house that would be ours for always so we wouldn’t have to move each year”. These quotes show that she a child of a 6 part family, and that she isn’t fond of moving, but has gotten used to the sad feeling of saying goodbye each year.
I think she would be much happier if they settled down in one spot, and that’s what she dreams about. 4. In the book, Esperanza lets on to a few little persona things about herself. “You live there? The way she said it made me feel like nothing. There. I lived there. I nodded. ” She says (pg. 5) This little clue shows that she cares a lot what other people think of her, even if they are judging her on her house. It also shows that her self-image is easily distorted and she stared thinking that her value as a person depended on how nice her house was. HAIRS: . In the book, Esperanza is telling you how everyone in her family has a different type of hair. “My Papa’s hair is like a broom, all up in the air. And me, my hair is lazy. It never obeys barrettes of bands. Carlos’ hair is thick and straight. He doesn’t have to comb it. Nenny’s hair is slippery- slides out of your hand. And Kiki, who is the youngest, has hair like fur”(6). In the next paragraph she talks about her mothers hair. So Esperanza has 5 other family members. Mama, Papa, Carlos, Nenny, Kiki, and herself. 2. Esperanza tells about her family’s hair.
This little act end up telling you a lot about herself and her family. “Everyone in our family has different hair”(6). What she is really telling you is that her family, although related, are each individuals with different views, and personalities. 4. In the House on Mango Street, even though Esperanza is just telling you about her and her family’s hair, she also tells you a lot about her family. “…Holding you and you feel like your safe… ”(6). She tells you that her mother is very important to her and very crucial to the family by devoting a whole paragraph to her.
Esperanza knows that her mother bonds her family together. BOYS AND GIRLS 1)No, Esperanza isn’t really “a balloon tied to an anchor”. It’s a good description because it describes how she feels. Esperanza feels like she’s fighting against something and losing. The heavy “anchor” which pulls downward is obviously more powerful than the light “balloon” that pulls upward, with no avail. Esperanza feels like she is the balloon, and the anchor is fighting against her. 2) In the story Esperanza is explaining some of her family dynamics. “They’ve got plenty to say to me and Nenny inside the house.
But outside they can’t be seen talking to girls”(8). Carlos and Kiki can’t watch out for Nenny because if they do the other boys might harass them. They act like they are too cool for that, when really they do care about her. Yes I have heard of differences like that. One time one of my neighbors wasn’t being very nice to me. We both have older siblings. I have a sister, and he has a brother. My sister saw what was happening and decided to stand p for me, but when the little boy asked for help from his older brother he just said “your on your own on this one”.
Here my sister stood up for me but his brother wouldn’t stand up for him. MY NAME: 1. Esperanza, who dislikes her name and long for a “prettier” one, was named after her great-grandmother. “I wonder if she made the best with what she got or was she sorry because she couldn’t be all the things she wanted to be. ”(11) Her great grandmother, strong, free woman was kidnapped by her great grandfather, which was followed by their marriage. After the, her grandmother felt caged, not as free or powerful. This shows the status of women in Mexican society was thought to be lower than that of men.
Women were thought more of property than anything else. 2. Esperanza tells you how she is proud and how she is ashamed of her name. Like always she doesn’t tell you straight out what she means, you have to dig a little deeper. “I have inherited her name, but I don’t want to inherit her place by the window”(11). Ezperanza finds her great-grandmothers fate shameful, and doesn’t want to end up like her. The author may have chosen her name as an enemy because it is something that you can overcome, even though it may not be very easy. CATHY QUEEN OF CATS: 1.
Cathy, Esperanza’s neighbor and new friend, is about to move because their family doesn’t like the people moving into their neighborhood. “In the meantime they’ll just have to move a little farther north from Mango Street, a little farther away every time people like us keep moving in. ” (13) Cathy’s family doesn’t like all the new neighbors moving in because they’re of color. They’re very racist and don’t want to have anything to do with these new neighbors. 2. Cathy, one of Esperanza’s neighbors, tells Esperanza all about the people in the neighborhood. “Two girls raggedy as rats live across the street.
You don’t want to know them”(12) Cathy said. Cathy says thing that may be completely untrue. I have noticed that she is very judgmental of the people around her, even if she doesn’t know them. She stereotypes everyone around her. 3. Esperanza’s neighborhood, a low-income area, is “getting bad” means that the people moving in are what are making the neighborhood so bad. “Then as if she forgot I just moved in, she says the neighborhood is getting bad. ” (13) People like Esperanza and her family, who are Hipic, are making the neighborhood “unfavorable” to live in
OUR GOOD DAY: 1. Esperanza makes friends with Lucy and Rachel, who are siblings, by giving them $5 so that Lucy and Rachel can buy a bike. “When I get back, Cathy is gone like I knew she would be, but I don’t care. ” (15) Lucy and Rachel make better friends than Cathy because Cathy is racist towards Esperanza’s family and the other families of color in their neighborhood. Also, Cathy is really judgmental. “Can’t you see that they smell like a broom. ” (14) Cathy’s quick to judge. 2. Esperanza meets the neighbors across the street. Their names are Lucy and Rachel. I have two new friends and a bike too,”(15) Esperanza said. In the previous chapter Cathy says these are girls you want to stay away from, but Esperanza takes a liking to them. 3. Cathy, Esperanza’s racist neighbor, reacts to Lucy and Rachel, also Esperanza’s neighbor, very negatively. “Don’t talk to them, says Cathy. (14) Obviously, Cathy wants nothing to do with them. She probably feels like she’s too good to waste her time on these people of different race. Cathy is also quick to throw out nasty comments about them. 4. When Esperanza stays to make friends with Lucy and Rachel, Cathy leaves ith no warning. “When I het back Cathy is gone, like I knew she would be”(15) Esperanza thought. Cathy decided to leave without even giving the sister a chance to show her how wrong she was about them. This reasoning is obviously not beneficial because she missed out on 2 friends and lost a third. LAUGHTER: 1. Nenny and Esperanza, who are sisters in a poor Hipic family, laugh forcefully and loudly. “…But all of a sudden and surprised like a pile of dished breaking. ” (17) Their very vocal laughs are the same, and that shows a lot more similarities between them besides just that.
It shows their personalities as well. It shows that they’re bold, daring, and a little rebellious. 2. Nenny and Esperanza laugh loud and uncontrollably. “ Our laughter for example. Not the shy ice ream bells’ giggle of Rachel and Lucy’s family, but all of a sudden and surprised like a pile of dishes breaking. And other things I cant explain,”(17) Esperanza said. The way Cisneros describes it tell you that their laugh is sudden and loud “like a pile of dished breaking”. 3. Esperanza, a young girl, is probably around eight years old. “You mean she I say. ” (15) Esperanza corrected Lucy, neighbor, about her grammar.
This shows a know-it-all attitude that many young girls around the age of eight possess. She’s at the point in her life where she thinks she’s more knowledgeable than other people because she’s now a “big girl”. “I would like to baptize myself under a new name…” (11) Esperanza is talking about how she would like to change her name to a prettier one. Many girls this age also go through a phase where they’re very self-conscious about what other people think about them and just want to be like everybody else. 4. Cathy, one of Esperanza’s neighbors, tells Esperanza all about the people in the neighborhood. Two girls raggedy as rats live across the street. You don’t want to know them”(12) Cathy said. Cathy says thing that may be completely untrue. I have noticed that she is very judgmental of the people around her, even if she doesn’t know them. She stereotypes everyone around her. 5. Esperanza’s neighborhood, a low-income area, is “getting bad” means that the people moving in are what are making the neighborhood so bad. “Then as if she forgot I just moved in, she says the neighborhood is getting bad. ” (13) People like Esperanza and her family, who are Hipic, are making the neighborhood “unfavorable” to live in
OUR GOOD DAY: 5. Esperanza makes friends with Lucy and Rachel, who are siblings, by giving them $5 so that Lucy and Rachel can buy a bike. “When I get back, Cathy is gone like I knew she would be, but I don’t care. ” (15) Lucy and Rachel make better friends than Cathy because Cathy is racist towards Esperanza’s family and the other families of color in their neighborhood. Also, Cathy is really judgmental. “Can’t you see that they smell like a broom. ” (14) Cathy’s quick to judge. 6. Esperanza meets the neighbors across the street. Their names are Lucy and Rachel. I have two new friends and a bike too,”(15) Esperanza said. In the previous chapter Cathy says these are girls you want to stay away from, but Esperanza takes a liking to them. 7. Cathy, Esperanza’s racist neighbor, reacts to Lucy and Rachel, also Esperanza’s neighbor, very negatively. “Don’t talk to them, says Cathy. (14) Obviously, Cathy wants nothing to do with them. She probably feels like she’s too good to waste her time on these people of different race. Cathy is also quick to throw out nasty comments about them. 4. When Esperanza stays to make friends with Lucy and Rachel, Cathy leaves with no warning. When I het back Cathy is gone, like I knew she would be”(15) Esperanza thought. Cathy decided to leave without even giving the sister a chance to show her how wrong she was about them. This reasoning is obviously not beneficial because she missed out on 2 friends and lost a third. LAUGHTER: 4. Nenny and Esperanza, who are sisters in a poor Hipic family, laugh forcefully and loudly. “…But all of a sudden and surprised like a pile of dished breaking. ” (17) Their very vocal laughs are the same, and that shows a lot more similarities between them besides just that. It shows their personalities as well.
It shows that they’re bold, daring, and a little rebellious. 5. Nenny and Esperanza laugh loud and uncontrollably. “ Our laughter for example. Not the shy ice ream bells’ giggle of Rachel and Lucy’s family, but all of a sudden and surprised like a pile of dishes breaking. And other things I cant explain,”(17) Esperanza said. The way Cisneros describes it tell you that their laugh is sudden and loud “like a pile of dished breaking”. 6. Esperanza, a young girl, is probably around eight years old. “You mean she I say. ” (15) Esperanza corrected Lucy, neighbor, about her grammar.
This shows a know-it-all attitude that many young girls around the age of eight possess. She’s at the point in her life where she thinks she’s more knowledgeable than other people because she’s now a “big girl”. “I would like to baptize myself under a new name…” (11) Esperanza is talking about how she would like to change her name to a prettier one. Many girls this age also go through a phase where they’re very self-conscious about what other people think about them and just want to be like everybody else. GIL’S FURNITURE BOUGHT AND SOLD: 1. In the book, Esperanza goes to a second hand store.
Here the owner, a black man who doesn’t talk much, shows them an old music box. “ Or like marimbas only with a funny little plucked sound to it like if you were running your fingers across the teeth of a metal comb”(20) she says, describing the sound it makes. Esperanza is really moved by the music the box makes, she is fascinate. She is ashamed of wanting it because she is embarrassed that she feels this way about the music. 2. Esperanza, a free-willed young girl, differentiates herself from her family by her hair and her laughter. “And me, my hair is lazy. It never obeys barrettes or bands. (6) In Hairs, Esperanza talks about how her hair is unique to her families. “…But all of a sudden and surprised like a pile of dishes breaking. ” (17) Esperanza’s laugh is bold, daring, and a little rebellious. She uses both to identify herself within her family. Like her unruly hair and her bold laugh, that is what makes up who she is and separates herself from the rest of her family. MEME ORTIZ: 1. In the story, Esperanza is telling you about her friend Juan, or as he likes to call himself, Meme. Some things her telling you this tells you that she is a child. All around the neighborhood roofs, black tarred and A-framed, and in their gutters, the balls that never came back down to earth”(22) Esperanza says. She gives you a hint about how old she is by talking about the balls that are stuck in the gutter. If she were an adult she would probably say something about the leaves in the gutter, not the balls. 2. Yes, there is humor in the chapter, Meme Ortiz. In the chapter, the reader is introduced to Esperanza’s neighbor, Meme Ortiz and all of his strange and unique qualities. “This is the tree we chose for the First Annual Tarzan Jumping Contest. Meme won.
And broke both arms. ” (22) This is humorous in a funny, childlike way. The writer, Sandra Cisneros, also adds this humor in other parts of The House on Mango Street. 3. In the story, Esperanza tells you that her friend Juan likes to go by Meme, and he introduces himself by that. “ His name isn’t really Meme. His name is Juan. But when we asked him what his name was he said Meme, and that’s what everybody calls him except his mother”(21) she says. I think someone might introduce himself or herself with a different name because they want their image to be different than what their real name gives.
LOUIE, HIS COUSIN AND HIS OTHER COUSIN: 1. In the story, Esperanza tells you about the kid who lives below Meme Ortiz, Louie, and his two cousins. “Louie’s girl cousin is older than us. She lives with Louie’s family because her own family is in Puerto Rico” and “Louie has another cousin. We only saw him once, but I was important” she tells you. So we know Louie has a female cousin named Marin, who lives with Louie. She always stand in the doorway, which tells you she feels trapped just like Esperanza’s great-grandmother did looking through the window.
I think this is an important thing to remember throughout the rest of the book. Also we find out that Louie has a male cousin who is older than all of them, old enough to drive. We also know that he is both a good guy and a bad guy. He is a bad guy because he stole and crashed an expensive car, but is also the good guy because instead of going on a road trip with the car, he came back to impress his family. He may do bad things, but on the inside e will always be a family guy. 2. Louie’s cousin was put in handcuffs because he stole a yellow Cadillac. They put handcuffs on him and put him in the backseat of the cop car…” (25) Louie’s cousin stole a car because he wanted to impress and show off to his poor family that lives in a poor neighborhood called Mango Street. Instead of showing off to his friends, he wanted to come home and show his kin what he made of himself. He wanted his family to be proud of him because he escaped their lifestyle. He wanted more than anything for his siblings to look up at him with amazement. 3. In the book, Cisneros tells a lot more about the actual actions and qualities of Louie’s cousin Marin. Her name is Marin or Maris or something like that, and she wears dark nylons all the time and lots of makeup she gets free from selling Avon. She cant come out- gotta baby-sit with Louie’s sisters- but she stands in the doorway a lot, all the time singing, clicking her fingers,” she says. I think she gives more detail about Marin because Marin is going to become an important character in the book. MARIN: 1. In the book, Esperanza talks about One of Louie’s cousins named Marin. “… She’s going to get a real job downtown because that’s where the best jobs are, since you always get to look beautiful and get to wear nice clothes and an meet someone in the subway who might marry you and take you to live in a big house far away” She says. We know that Marin is a teenager, around 16 or 17, who sells Avon and babysits her cousins. She can’t leave the house because she babysits them so much. Unlike many people on Mango Street Marin has a plan to get off Mango Street. She plans to get a real job and meet someone who will marry her, and live with, away from Mango Street. Like all good planners she has a plan B, which is to go back to Puerto Rico and marry her boyfriend there.
Esperanza admires her because she has a plan and is fearless, just like her great grandmother. 2. Marin is a girl who is living with her younger cousin and his family in a neighborhood called Mango Street. “But next year Louie’s parents are going to send her back to her mother with a letter saying she’s too much trouble…” (27) Marin is living with Louie’s family because she’s a troublemaker. She was a handful to her mom back home in Puerto Rico so her mom wanted to send her to Mango Street to get Marin off of her hands. Marin also helps with babysitting Louie and his brothers and sisters. 3.
Sandra Cisneros dedicated a whole chapter to this one character, so we know that she is important. “Marin, under the streetlight, dancing by herself, is singing the same song somewhere. I know. Is waiting for a car to stop, a star to fall, someone to change her life” Esperanza tells the reader. I think Cisneros dedicated this chapter to Marin because she is related a lot to Esperanza. Marin also wants something better for her life, and is making a real plan to do it. She is only a few years older than Esperanza, so she is still learning and growing, and she looks out of the doorway into the world, just like Esperanza great grandmother.
THOSE WHO DON’T: 1. Outsiders see Esperanza’s neighborhood, a low-income area consisting of mostly people of color, scary. “But watch us drive into a neighborhood of and our knees go shakity-shake…” (28) When Esperanza visits other neighborhoods, she feels very frightened. Nothing is comforting or familiar about it to her. The unknown is the most frightening of all. When she goes to a neighborhood where she doesn’t know what to expect, it can be a terrifying experience. It also goes for people who visit her neighborhood and just don’t know what to expect. 2.
In the book, Esperanza talks about how the people who come to Mango Street who are scared. “ Those who don’t know any better come into our neighborhood scared. They think were dangerous. They think we will attack them with shiny knives. They are stupid people who are lost and got here by mistake,” she says. Outsiders are afraid of Mango street because they see people who are strangers, and different than them. They don’t know the whole story, and they don’t bother to look any deeper than the surface. They stereotype people, out of fear. 3. Esperanza lives in a neighborhood where there are mostly minorities.
This is very comforting to her because they’re the same as her and her family. ”All brown all around, we are safe. ” (28) This means that she feels safe by the fact that everybody in her neighborhood looks like she does and has to face the same struggles as well. People around her understand where her and her family comes from because they themselves come from the same place and that diminishes any fear of being ridiculed or judged. The familiar faces comfort Esperanza. THERE WAS AN OLD WOMAN: 1. Rosa Vargas is a mom of a large family that lives on Mango Street in Chicago. …Who cries every day for the man who left without even leaving a dollar for bologna or a note explaining how come. ” (29) Rosa Vargas cries every day because she feels abandoned and helpless because her husband left her and her many children. Her children misbehave because their mom, Rosa, is so busy and tired all the time, and it’s impossible for her to control her many children. Rosa Vargas’s son, Angel, died because he tried to fly and ending up falling to the ground. 2. In the House on Mango Street, Esperanza tells you about a woman who lives in her Neighborhood, named Rosa Vargas who has too many children. … And who cries every day for the man who left without even leaving a dollar for bologna or a not explaining how come” Esperanza explains. We know that Rosa Vargas is a singe Mother, with too many kids, and no money to support them. She cant d all of I by Herself, and we know that because one of her children have already died. Knowing this tells us that she id destined for disappointment and failure. ALICIA WHO SEES MICE: 1. Alicia is a college student who lives with her dad and studies at the university, something very unusual for where she’s from.
Her mom died so Alicia is taking over the responsibilities of her mom’s. “…she doesn’t want to spend her whole life in a factory or behind a rolling pin. ” (32) Alicia’s dreams and goals for herself are to get a good paying job and move away from her father. She is a very smart girl who values education, unlike her father, and doesn’t want to be like most women, locked up in a house doing chores all day for her family. Alicia also wants to get away from her abusive father that views her as nothing more than somebody to make his lunch and to clean up after him.
Alicia’s father discourages her efforts to get an education 2. Esperanza tells you how Alicia makes her dads lunch everyday, and has t make homemade tortillas everyday for him. “Alicia, whose mama died, is sorry there is no one older to rise and make lunchbox tortillas”(31) Esperanza says. So Alicia makes the Tortillas every morning because her mother died, so she has to take over the role as the woman of the house. 3. Alicia is a girl who lives with her father after her mother died and studies at the local university. “I am afraid of mice.
And my father. ” (32) Alicia is afraid of mice and her father because mice symbolize the dirty, low-income area she lives in and desperately wants to get out of, and she’s afraid of her father because he abuses her. It’s a frightening thought for Alicia to stay in the house she currently lives in, with an abusive father in a run-down, uneducated neighborhood. More than anything, Alicia doesn’t want to be stuck in a house all day, doing chores for somebody else. 4. Esperanza’s realationship with Alicia has changed since earlier in the book.
During Cathy Queen of Cats Esperanza believes she is “ stuck up ever since she went to college”(12) because that’s what Cathy told her. After this chapter she know that Alicia is really just determined to meet her goal and move on. She want to move away from the life she has now, and begin a new, better life, away from the mice, her father, and Mango Street. DARIUS AND THE CLOUDS: 1. In the story Esperanza tells you about a misbehaving boy named Darius. “ You can never have to much sky” she says, explaining how Darius feels about the sky. This statement means that the sky is good, and we can never have enough goodness.
I think that this statement is true because I think of the sky as a happy thing, and we can never have enough happiness. 2. Darius is a little boy that is obnoxious and makes trouble. “Darius, who chases girls with firecrackers or a stick that touched a rat and think he’s tough…” (33) Darius is drastically different than the clouds he describes. He describes beautiful objects full of live and beauty, where as he is rude and annoying. How he describes the dogs is interesting because it’s not expected for somebody so “cool” and “tough” like him to appreciate something beautiful. AND SOME MORE: 1.
Names to Esperanza are very important because, to her, names show the beholder’s character, personality, and overall well-being. “The Eskimos got thirty different names for snow…” (35) Esperanza is intrigues by names. Names are important because they identify a person. Without a name, a person has no sense of self-identity or importance. Names distinguish one person from another. 2. In the story, Esperanza talks about names again, but the way she portrays them from before (in “my name”) is much different. “ The Eskimos got thirty different names for snow, I say”(35). In this way she portrays names as a fact, not much emotion behind it. In English my name means hope”(10), Esperanza tells you. As you can see, apposed to the other reference, this example is full of emotion. So the difference in the way she portrays them is the personal connection she makes with them. A RICE SANDWICH: 1. In the story Esperanza tells you about the time she tried to eat in the canteen at school. “ The special kids, the ones who wear keys around their necks, get to eat in the canteen. The canteen! Even the name sounds important”(43) Esperanza says. It is easy for the reader to tell that Esperanza longs to eat lunch in the canteen.
She says the people there are the “special kids” and that everything about it is cool, right down to the name. She wants to eat in the canteen because she wants to be special, like the other kids who eat there. 2. Esperanza desperately wants to eat lunch in the canteen at her private catholic school because she thinks it would be the most wonderful experience in the world. “Okay, okay, my mother says after three days of this. ” (44) Esperanza gets her mom to help her with this plan to eat lunch in the canteen by nagging her and make her feel guilty for three straight days.
Esperanza persuades her mom if her favor by listing off reasons of how she’s weak, how this situation would benefit her mother, and how Esperanza’s mom would appreciate Esperanza more by not seeing her at lunch. After feeling guilty and annoyed, Esperanza’s mother finally gives and lets her eat in the canteen. 3. In the story Esperanza tells you about the special kids who eat at school. “ The special kids, the ones who wear keys around their necks, get to eat in the canteen”(43) Esperanza tells the reader. The special kids are the kids who get to stay at school for lunch because their house is too far away.
They are special because only certain kids get to stay for lunch. 4. Esperanza was very excited when her mom told her that she could eat lunch in the canteen at her school. She thought it would be an amazing, fun experience. “In the canteen, which was nothing special, lots of boys and girls watched while I cried and ate my sandwich, the bread already greasy and the rice cold. ” (45) Esperanza’s idea of eating lunch in the canteen didn’t live up to her expectations. Because of her frightening confrontation with the head nun, Sister Superior, and her eye-opening realization that ating lunch in the canteen is nothing special, Esperanza’s hopes and dreams were crushed. CHANCLAS: 1. In the story, Esperanza talks about how she is really self-conscious of her old shoes. “ Everybody laughing except me, because I’m wearing the new dress, pink and white with stripes, and new underclothes and new socks and the old saddle shoes I wear to school, brown and white, the kind I get every September because they last long and they do. My feet scuffed and round, and the heels all crooked that look dumb with this dress, so I just sit”(47) She says.
Although her concerns are understandable, she is being a little dramatic about them. I would say that Esperanza is not justified about her concerns because she is too worried about her shoes, and shouldn’t worry as much as she is. 2. Esperanza is a young girl who attends a baptism party with her family. She wears a new dress, new underclothes, and new socks but her mom forgot to buy her new shoes. She feels extremely embarrassed of her “ugly shoes”, so much so that at the beginning of the party she is miserable. My feet swell big and heavy like plungers, but I drag them across the linoleum floor…” (47) The author writes vivid details about the setting…mostly how Esperanza feels about her shoes. HIPS: 1. In the book, Sandra Cisneros devoted a whole chapter to hips. “ One day you wake up and they are there. Ready and waiting like a new Buick with the keys in the ignition”(49) Esperanza explains about hips. I think Cisneros has a whole chapter for hips because it is a part of growing up. This fits into the genre a bildungsroman because physically changing is a part of coming of age, which is what a bildungsroman is about. . Esperanza, a young girl, is starting to notice developmental changes in girls. “They’re good for holding a baby when you’re cooking…” “You need them to dance…” (49) Hips are good for caring a baby, dancing, and distinguishing a male from a female. Esperanza and her friends are playing double-dutch while they talk about hips. What sparked this topic is the shape the double-dutch ropes make when they open and close just like growing hips. 3. In the book, Esperanza talks a lot about how she and Nenny are different. “ If you don’t get them you may turn into a man. Nenny says and she believes it.
She is this way because of her age”(50) Esperanza explains. She distinguishes herself by the way she feels about age. Esperanza wants them, thinks they are a good part of life. Nenny makes a joke about hips, and doesn’t think they are really good, but that eventually she must get them because if she doesn’t she will turn into a man. In the chapter Gil’s furniture bought and sold we see this distinction of maturity also. “ And then I don’t know why, but I have to turn around and pretend I don’t care about the box so Nenny wont see how stupid I am”(20) Esperanza says.
We can see that Esperanza is more touched or moved by the music than Nenny, because she is older, and more mature, so she can appreciate it much more than Nenny can. THE FIRST JOB: 1. Esperanza is a girl living in a poor family. To help financially in her family, she gets a job at Peter Pan Photo Finishers, matching negatives with their prints. “It was real easy, and I guess I wouldn’t have minded it except that you got tired after a while…” (54) Some minuses of the job is that it’s tiring and it’s mostly older people than Esperanza working there so she feels out of place.
Some pluses of the job are that it’s easy and it brings in more money for Esperanza’s family. 2. In the book, Esperanza gets treated a lot different by men than she is used to. “ Then he asked if I knew what day it was, and when I said I didn’t, he said it was his birthday and would I please give him a birthday kiss”(55) she says. Esperanza is treated like a woman by the men she meets at work, like she is old enough to be in a relationship with one of them. 3. The House on Mango Street has a misleading title because the story isn’t just about Esperanza’s house, it’s also about her experiences in the area she lives in. …he grabs my face with both hands and kisses me hard on the mouth and doesn’t let go. ” (55) A man approaches Esperanza on her first day of work and befriends her. He tells her that it’s his birthday, and he asks Esperanza to give him a birthday kiss, and ends up forcing his mouth to Esperanza’s. This episode tells the reader that Esperanza’s family expects their members to respect elders and to be obedient to them. PAPA WHO WAKES UP TIRED IN THE DARK: 1. In The House on Mango Street, Esperanza tells the reader about the time her dad came into her room in the morning to tell her something. Your abuelito is dead, Papa says early one morning in my room”(56) Esperanza says. If you translate this from Spanish to English it means your grandfather is dead. This is sad because her father lost one of his parents, which is always a devastating thing, even if you were not that close to them. 2. Esperanza’s family is a poor one that struggles to make ends meet. “My Papa, his thick hands and thick shoes, who wakes up tired in the dark, who combs his hair with water, drinks his coffee, and is gone before we wake…” (57) Esperanza’s Papa has a hard, strenuous life and probably works as a laborer.
The reader can infer this because he has thick hands from using them a lot, thick shoes meant to be worn outdoors somewhere, and his job starts early. Papa works extremely hard to support his family. 3. In this chapter, Esperanza takes a step from her childhood into her adulthood. It is a good example of the genre bildungsroman. “ I have never seen my papa cry and I don’t know what to do”(56) “ I hold my Papa in my arms. I hold and hold and hold him”(57). Esperanza has never seen her dad cry before. He has always been the one to be there for her when she was crying, but now it’s the other way around.
She has to be brave for him, like he has been brave for her her entire life. Situations like this force you to grow up, and Esperanza is no exception to that. 4. When Esperanza learns from her father that her grandpa died, she is worried what she would do if her father ever died. “And I think if my own Papa died what would I do. I hold Papa in my arms. ” (57) Esperanza’s relationship with her father is one of love. Esperanza cares deeply for her father and couldn’t imagine living without him. 5. Esperanza’s grandfather dies in this chapter, and this devastates her dad. Because I am oldest, my father has told me first, and now it is my turn to tell the others”(56). Esperanza becomes more mature, because she has to be serious to her siblings, which is a very hard thing to do. It also develops Esperanza because her dad has trusted her with this, and she must do right by him. BORN BAD: 1. Esperanza and her siblings sometimes played a game where they picked somebody they knew and imitated them. One day, they decided that they were going to imitate their aunt who was very sick, and she ended up dying that day. Most likely I will go to hell and most likely I deserve to be there. ” (58) Esperanza feels guilty about Aunt Lupe because Aunt Lupe was a paralyzed, blind women and Esperanza and her siblings made fun of her. Esperanza feels responsible for her aunt’s death because Aunt Lupe died the same day that she made cruel, sick jokes about her. 2. In the story, Esperanza explains about her aunt, who is very ill. Esperanza also talks about some disease in general. “ But I think diseases have no eyes. They pick with a dizzy finger anyone, just anyone”(59) she says.
Esperanza explains them as if they were a person who spun around a lot so they were dizzy and then put there finger on a list of names, and whoever they hit got their disease. It is a good metaphor for saying that diseases often happen to the best people, for no apparent reason. 3. Esperanza reads her crippled Aunt Lupe one of the poems she wrote. “ You must keep writing, it will keep you free” Aunt Lupe says. I think Aunt Lupe meant that Esperanza is a really good writer, and that if she pursued a career in writing, it could take her away from Mango Street, away from everything she knows as bad, and especially away from windows.
ELENITA, CARDS, PALM, WATER: 1. Esperanza has her fortune read by a neighbor, Elenitia, and Elenetia reads that Esperanza has a home in her heart, which disappoints her. “Ah yes, a home in the heart. I see a home in the heart,” says Elentita. “Is that it? ” says Esperanza. (64) A “home in the heart” means that where ever Esperanza goes, she will find the characteristics of a home will follow her, such as warmth, friendliness, and comfort. This is disappointing to Esperanza because she wanted to be told by Elenetia that she was going to get a big, fancy house one day in her future.
GERALDO NO LAST NAME: 1. Geraldo is a man who danced one night with a young girl named Marin. “An accident, don’t you know. Hit-and-run. ” (65) Geraldo was hit by a car the night he danced with Marin. Both he and Marin went to the hospital, where he eventually died. Because of his ethnicity (Spanish), the hospital didn’t bother waking the surgeon in the middle of the night, but rather let the intern try to perform on him. Geraldo died because of racism towards him. 2. In the story Esperanza tells a story about Marin and a man she was dancing with at a dance club. “ That’s the story.
That’s what she said again and again. Once to the hospital people and twice to the police. No address. No name. nothing in his pockets. Ain’t it a shame”(66). He has no last name because he has no id on him, and Marin never found out his last name because they just met. I think that ,like previously in the book when Angel Vargas died, Geraldo’s death was preventable. “And maybe if the surgeon would’ve come, maybe if he hadn’t lost so much blood, if the surgeon had only come, they would know who to notify and where”(66). It says right here that simply paging a surgeon could have prevented his death.
Geraldo’s death could have been easily prevented. 3. Geraldo is a young man who got hit by a car one night and went the hospital, where he died because the surgeon came so late. “Nobody but an intern working all alone. And maybe if the surgeon would’ve come…” (66) The surgeon was so late in coming to work on Geraldo because it was the middle of the night and the hospital didn’t want to wake him just for a minority who probably doesn’t even have health insurance. The hospital could tell the Geraldo was Spanish because of his first name that is a common Spanish one, and the fact that he didn’t even have a last name.
When the found him, he had no ID on him. 4. In the House on Mango Street, Esperanza describes people in a certain way. “ She met him at a dance. Geraldo in his shiny shirt and green pants. Geraldo going to a dance”(66) she says. Geraldo, like many other people in the story, is describes on his appearance. “.. his shiny shirt” and “green pants”, the things he is wearing, is what he is identified by. 5. Geraldo is a young man who sent money home to his family in another country. Because of this, he had to live a simple life, with money tight. They never knew about the two-room flats and sleeping rooms he rented, the weekly money orders sent home, the currency exchange. ” (66) The author portrays Geraldo as a hard workingman with a kind heart. Sandra Cisneros tries to show the truth of Geraldo’s life-how he suffered to help out his family, and how, when he died, nobody knew that. When Geraldo died, nobody cared what he did; nobody cared that he died because he was Spanish. 6. The chapter Geraldo no Last Name is the last chapter in the book that Marin is mentioned. “And what was she doing out at three a. . anyway? Marin who was sent home with her coat and some aspirin. How does she explain? ”(66). The significance of Marin never being mentioned again in the book is that her Aunt sent her back to live in Puerto Rico again. Marin arriving home at 3 a. m. , even if it was for a good thing like staying with someone so they don’t die alone, was like the straw that broke the camels back. EDNA’S RUTHIE: 1. In the story, Esperanza tells her about one of her friends, Ruthie, who is different because she is an adult, and Esperanza doesn’t have many adult friends. Ruthie, tall skinny lad with red lipstick and blue babushka, one blue sock and one green because she forgot, is the only grown-up we know that likes to play”(67). Ruthie likes to play because she is developmentally disabled, meaning she will never grow up, or truly be a grown up, no matter how old she gets. To adults Ruthie is different, but to Esperanza, Ruthie is a friend. 2. Ruthie is a grown woman who has a developmental problem, and she acts like a small child because her brain didn’t grow properly. “She doesn’t need anybody to laugh with, she just laughs. (67)Ruthie is a free-spirited woman that can still appreciate having childlike fun. She doesn’t understand the world around her, but that doesn’t stop her from having a young child’s curiosity, ambition to learn, and a different, more interesting, perspective on life. Because of her developmental issue, she never had a job, learned to read, moved out of her mom’s house, got married, or had children. Even though the opportunity never presented itself in her life to do these things, she still hopes for them in a way only a child could- passionately. . In the book, Cisneros has mentioned someone similar to Ruthie in previous chapters. From Cathy Queen of Cats Cathy is like Ruthie. “ … She says the neighborhood is getting bad,”(13) Esperanza explains. The reader know that Cathy is old enough to know a lot about the neighborhood, but still acts like she is a child. “ Books are wonderful, Ruthie says, and then she runs her hand over them as if she could read them in braille”(69). Ruthie still can’s read, so we know that even though she is an adult, she still acts like a child, just like Cathy.
I think that both of these women are developmentally disabled, so they will never be able to act their age. 4. Ruthie is Esperanza’s neighbor who still lives at home with her mom, out of work and not married, because of her developmental problem. “There were many things Ruthie could have been if she wanted to. ” (68)Esperanza learns from Ruthie’s experience that she doesn’t want to end up like her. This helps her formulate goals that can help her get out of Mango Street, where she lives, and make something for herself. Seeing Ruthie, it frightened Esperanza with the thought that she could possibly ind up like her. THE EARL OF TENESSEE: 1. Esperanza calls the man who lives next door in Edna’s basement “The Earl of Tennessee”. “He speaks with a Southern accent,”(71) she says. “He gives the records away to us- all except the country and western”(71). All Esperanza know about this man is that his name is Earl, and he has a Southern accent. So she decides to call him the Earl of Tennessee because of this. 2. Earl a man who the children in his neighborhood are confused by because his “wife” keeps changing. He really brings different girls to his house to person, his wife. We never agree on what she looks like…” (71) This is a mystery to the children because Earl’s “wife’s” appearance is always changing. One day they may see a blond girl, the next brown, and the next red. SIRE: 1. In the story, Esperanza talks about one of the “bad boys” who lives on her street. “I knew he was looking. I had to prove to me that I wasn’t scared of nobody’s eyes, not even his”(72). “ It made your blood freeze when somebody look at you like that. Somebody looked at me. Somebody looked”(73). Esperanza is having feelings for Sire that she has never felt before.
Sire is Esperanza’s first crush, and that is why when he looks at her, she feels nervous, happy, and scared all at the same time. 2. Sire is a “bad boy” who Esperanza has a crush on. “He is a punk, Papa says, and Mama says not to talk to him. ” (73) Esperanza’s parents think that Sire is a bad influence because he does things and act in a way that they don’t approve of. Sire drinks beer and makes out with his girlfriend, both of which are frowned upon. Esperanza’s parents probably don’t want her talking to him because they’re afraid of her safety, and they also don’t want any of those “bad” traits to rub off on her. . Esperanza gives a lot of detail about Lois, Sire’s girlfriend, and what she knows they are doing. “ Sire. How did you hold her? Was it? Like this? And when you kissed her? Like this? ”(73). Esperanza pas so much attention to what Sire and Lois do because in the back of her mind she wants that to be her with him. Notice that she uses the past tense when she refers to how he holds her, not present. I think this means the she wants it to be her that he holds this time, in the present, not Lois. 4. Sire’s girlfriend, Louis, appears like a grown girl, but there are parts of her that emotionally haven’t grown. She’s got big girl hands, and her bones are long like ladies’ bones, and she wears makeup too. But she doesn’t know how to tie her shoes. ” (73) Lois is a paradox or a contradiction because there is a side of her that is mature and there is a side that is kept incompetent and childlike. From the outside, she looks like an older girl, with her makeup and long limbs. On the inside, she is kept incompetent and reliable of other people, which make her more vulnerable. NO SPEAK ENGLISH: 1. Esperanza tells the story of the Mamacita “the big mama of the man across the street, third floor front” (76).
Mamacita doesn’t like to speak English, so she only knows three phrases. They are “he not here” (77) “no speak English” (77) and “holy smokes” (77). I would say that if I put a color to this chapter it would be a deep, dark blue, because to me that color seems sad. I think this chapter is sad because Mamacita says “cuando, cuando, cuando? ”(78), her son replies “Ay, caray! We are home” (78). I think Mamacita just want to go home to Mexico where she can speak English and be herself, but can’t because she is stuck in the U. S. and to me that’s sad. 2.
Mamacita is a woman who moved with her baby in to her husband’s house, probably from another country. She knows very little English and hates speaking it. “She sits all day by the window and plays the Spanish radio show and sings all the homesick songs about her country…” (77) Mamacita is trapped, she misses her home in another country, and she doesn’t feel like she belongs in Chicago, where she currently lives. She feels homesick for her previous home, and she stays inside her new house all day because she doesn’t want to be forced to speak English. 3.
Sandra Cisneros lets her opinion about Mamacita come through a little bit. “ No speak English, she says to the child who is singing in the language that sounds like tin. No speak English, no speak English, and bubbles in tears. No, no, no, as if she can’t believe her ears”(78) I think that Sandra Cisneros feels sympathetic towards Mamacita. I think she does because Cisneros is a Spanish name, and she had to learn English at some point in her life I think that Cisneros may have gone through, or watched someone go through what Mamacita is going through now.
RAFAELA: 1. Rafaela is a woman who is trapped in her house all day by her husband because she’s “too beautiful to look at”. “…Who is still young but getting old from leaning out of the window so much…” (79) Rafaela is growing old because she’s sitting by the window all day long from being trapped inside. She’s become weary and tired of the longing to be able to be set free, to not be caged in. Rafaela is another woman who sits by windows. 2. While reading this book, the author makes an allusion to a children’s book titled Rapunzel.
In the story Rapunzel, a young woman, is locked in a tower and longs to get out. Eventually her hair gets so long that she lets it down to her prince charming. In The House on Mango Street, Rafaela is similar to Rapunzel. “And then Rafaela, who is still young but getting old from leaning out the window so much, gets locked indoors because her husband is afraid Rafaela will run away since she is too beautiful to look at”(79). Rafaela dreams of hair as long as Rapunzel’s so she can let it down to her prince charming and escape her house, and her husband. 3.
Mostly all of the women on Mango Street stay in their houses all day because their husbands won’t let them out. “…gets locked indoors because her husband is afraid Rafaela will run away since she is too beautiful to look at. ” (79) Rafaela represents many other women in Mango Street. The women are very much controlled by their husbands, and don’t have as much status in society. The author, Sandra Cisneros, argues that women are not treated fairly, and they should have more rights. SALLY: 1. In the book, Esperanza tells the story of her friend, a beautiful, but restricted girl named Sally. And why do you always go home right after school? You become a different sally… …You look at your feet and walk fast to the house you cant come out from”(82), Esperanza asks Sally. On the way home Sally changes so she doesn’t get in trouble by her father who says “… to be this beautiful is trouble”(81). I think that the relationship between Sally and her father is fake, because Sally can’t be herself around him; she has to change on the way home. 2. Sally is a very beautiful young woman that wears a lot of makeup and clothes that show a lot of skin. The stories the boys tell in the coatroom, they’re not true. ” (82) Sally’s schoolmates see her as a slut. They think this because she’s pretty, her eye makeup makes her look like Cleopatra, she wears black, and all the boys like her. Both the girls and the boys at her school think that she is a slut. 3. Sally, one of Esperanza’s friends, changes on the way home from school. “You become a different Sally. You pull your skirt straight, you rub the blue paint off your eyelids. You don’t laugh, Sally”(82). After school on the way home, Sally changes her appearance to one that her father would approve of.
I think she does this because she is afraid of what her father would say if she wore the clothes she wanted. 4. Sally is a girl who has an exotic beauty. “The boys at school think she’s beautiful because her hair is shiny black like raven feathers…” It’s strange to call beauty a problem because most people would die to be beautiful. Sally is extremely beautiful, but, in her case, it is a problem. Because of her beauty she is called a slut, feels exiled from her classmates, and is not allowed to come out of her house because it’s “dangerous to be too beautiful”.
Her beauty is handicapping her, as where most girls would find being beautiful the opposite of a problem. 5. In the book, Esperanza asks Sally what she wished for. “ Sally, do you sometimes wish you didn’t have to go home? That you wish your feet would one day keep walking and take you far away from Mango Street, far away and maybe your feet would stop in front of a house, a nice one with flowers and big widows and steps for you to climb up two by two upstairs to where a room is waiting for you”(82) Esperanza asks. I think she asks Sally these questions, but it’s really what Esperanza wants for herself.
I do not think that these wishes are realistic because you can’t just walk away from your life if it’s bad; you have to work your way out. MINERVA WRITES POEMS: 1. Minerva is a woman who is raising two small children after her husband left her. “…she writes poems on little pieces of paper that she folds over and over and holds in her hands a long time, little pieces of paper that smell like a dime. ” (84) Minerva writes poems because it’s her way of expressing her emotions. She can express her pain and suffering through these poems, because there’s nobody else to complain to.
It’s an outlet for her when she feels helpless or afraid. 2. In the book, Esperanza tells the story of Minerva, who is a young woman who has two children, and a bad husband. “But that night he comes back and sends a big rock through the window”(85). The reader can tell that Minerva’s husband can be violent when he is angry about something, even is his violence could hurt his wife or children. When Minerva comes to Esperanza all black and blue and asks her what she can do, its because her violent husband beat her up. 3. Minerva is a woman who gets beaten by husband that keeps leaving and coming back. Next week Minerva comes over black and blue and asks what can she do? ” (85) She is a victim because her husband beats her. Minerva is tired of dealing with her husband, but she has a big heart and feels guilty after she kicks him out. She seems desperate to get out of this reoccurring cycle. 4. Esperanza talks about Minerva’s poems in this chapter. “… she writes poems on little pieces of paper that she folds over and over and holds in her hands a long time, little pieces of paper that smell like a dime She lets me read her poems. I let her read mine.
She is always sad like a house on fire—always something wrong”(84). Esperanza says. I think the simile between the poems and the smell of a dime is really clever, because to me dimes smell unpleasant, just like the words in the poems are unpleasant. 5. Esperanza is Minerva’s friend who comes to her asking for advice on how to deal with her abusive husband. “There is nothing I can do,” Esperanza says to Minerva. (85) The way that Esperanza says this hints that she can’t do anything, but other people can. Esperanza probably thinks that the only way for Minerva to get help is through the actions she needs to take.
BUMS IN THE ATTIC: 1. In the chapter Bums in the Attic Esperanza tells you where her father works/ what her father does for a living. “I want a house on a hill like the ones with gardens where papa works,”(86) Esperanza says. The reader knows that papa works at big houses with gardens. So the reader can conclude that her father is a gardener or works with a lawn service. 2. Every Sunday, Esperanza and her family go and look at houses on the hill like the ones where Esperanza’s father works. “I don’t tell them I am ashamed-all of us staring out the window like the hungry. (86) Esperanza has stopped joining her family on Sunday outings because she’s ashamed of looking at what she can never have. She’s justified in saying that she’s ashamed because it is embarrassing to be caught staring admirably at something that is so “out of her league”. When she goes with her family to their Sunday outings, she’s putting all of her hopes and dreams out in the open for anybody to look at. That makes her feel vulnerable and uncomfortable. 3. In the book, Esperanza says that she wants to keep bums in her attic when she owns a house of her own. One day I’ll own my own house, but I wont forget who I am or where I came from. Passing bums will ask, Can I come in? I’ll offer them the attic, ask them to stay, because I know how it is to be without a house”(87) Esperanza says. She wants to keep bums in her attic because she wants to help people that are less fortunate than her. She is sympathetic with them because she used to be like them, and would want someone to let her stay in their attic. BEAUTIFUL AND CRUEL: 1. Esperanza decided that she was going to “begin her own quiet war”. “I am the one who leaves the table like a man, without putting back the chair or picking up the plate. (89) Esperanza’s “quiet war” is her rebelling through her actions. She is fighting against the stereotype of what women should be like-posed, polite, obedient, pretty. She’s fighting by becoming the opposite of these stereotypes, and more like the stereotypical man. 2. Esperanza is showing what I would call the “rebellious side” to herself in this chapter. “… but I have decided not to grow up tame like the others…”(88) She says. I think that Esperanza means that she isn’t going to end up like most of the other women she knows. She will not be controlled by men, and will stay free her whole life.
I also think that Esperanza is trying to say, “I’m not going to be like everybody else, I am going to be me, even if that means I’m much different than the status quo”. 3. Esperanza is a teenage girl who is very attracted to men. “I want to sit out bad at night, a boy around my neck and the wind under my skirt. ” (73) Esperanza’s developing opinion of men is that they are desirable, mysterious, controlling, and sometimes creepy. When the homeless man offered to kiss her and when the oriental man actually did kiss her at her work, it ignited a sense of creepiness towards men.
Esperanza thought that Sire, a boy she had a crush on, was mysterious and very desirable because of the way he looked and what he did. Also, when she saw all the women on Mango Street sitting at windows, locked up by the husbands, created a feeling that men were very controlling. A SMART COOKIE: 1. In this chapter the reader finds out that Esperanza’s mother is a very intelligent person. “ She can speak who languages. She can sing an opera. She knows how to fix a T. V. But she doesn’t know which subway train to take to get downtown. I hold her hand very tight while we wait for the right train to arrive”(90).
I would categorize what Mama knows as dependency knowledge. She knows things that people can teach her, or that she can pick up from someone who controls her, but when it comes to doing something out in the world on her own she doesn’t know much about it. Like she knows how to speak two languages, probably something her family taught her, but she doesn’t even know which subway train to take downtown, which is something that you learn when you get a job, and get your freedom Similarities between Esperanza & MammaDifferences between Esperanza & Mamma . ant(ed) to be free .want(ed) to make a life for themselves .care(s/d) about what other people think about them. Esperanza is more comfortable in the Subway . Mamma has more experience .Mamma had better judgement 2. 3. Esperanza’s mother, the reader finds out, is a very intelligent woman. “ You want to know why I quit school? Because I didn’t have nice clothes. No clothes, but I had brains”(91). Mama dropped out of school, even though She was very smart, which doesn’t make a lot of sense because usually dropouts aren’t the brightest bulbs in the closet.
I think this is ironic because Mama calls herself a “ smart cookie” when she made the horrible decision to drop out of high school. 4. Esperanza’s mother quit school because she didn’t have nice clothes. She has regretted it ever since, and wants to push Esperanza through school so that Esperanza can learn from her mistakes. “Esperanza, you go to school. Study hard. ” (91) The quote, “Good judgment comes from experience. Experience comes from bad judgment,” relates to the chapter because Mamma made a bad choice by dropping out of school. From this experience, she can help Esperanza make a good choice. . Mama teaches Esperanza a valuable lesson in this chapter, she gives Esperanza advice based on her bad decisions. “Esperanza, you go to school. Study hard”(91) Mama says. Mama dropped out of high school, and has regretted it her whole life she is “disgusted”(91) with herself because she could have been independent, free, and she could have made something of herself. Esperanza learns that education is a way to freedom from her mother in this chapter. I think that Mama always wans the best for Esperanza, because she didn’t get the best for herself. I would say Mama and Esperanza are close to each other.
WHAT SALLY SAID: 1. Sally is a teenage girl who gets abused by her father if she shows any interest in boys. “That’s where the blue places come from. That’s why her skin is always scarred. ” (92) The author of The House on Mango Street uses such a straightforward, unvarnished telling of child abuse because it helps the reader get more of an in depth view of Mango Street. By not sugarcoating the truth, the reader can fully understand what the characters’ lives consist of and the hardships they face. 2. Her father, the reader finds out, abuses Sally.
One day her mother sends her to Esperanza’s house to stay for a while. The night she arrived at Esperanza’s, after being beaten once again by her father, her father comes to get her back. “ And would’ve stayed too except when dark came her father who’s eyes were little from crying, knocked on the door and said pleas come back, this is the last time. And she said Daddy and went home”(93). Sally really does love her father, and he loves her too, despite the beatings. The reader can conclude this because he was crying about what he did right before he came to get her.
Also she calls him Daddy, which is an affectionate thing to say
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