3Sandra Cisneros The House on Mango Street is an well-incorporated story told through vignettes shorts sections that piece by piece fit into a puzzle and reveal a theme. This unique story is about a disadvantaged young Chicana girl, named Esperanza, growing up in a poor neighborhood where she feels she does not belong. She does not like what she experiences, and constantly searches for a new future.
As Esperanza grows and changes throughout the book, she realizes that women in her culture are treated unfairly, and makes a conscious choice not to fall into the same trap as the women around her. 4Women all around Esperanza, such as Minerva and Sally, are held hostage, within their own acceptance of an unjust cultural fate. For example, Minerva is a young girl who constantly prays for better luck, and a happier life, but enables her husband to take advantage of her, and therefore sets the path for her unsatisfactory life. One day she is through and lets him know enough is enough.
Out the door he goes. Clothes, records, shoes. Out the window and the door locked. However, that night he comes back and sends a big rock through the window. Then he is sorry and she opens the door again.
Minerva finds herself forgiving without truly seeing that her husband is sorry. She used marriage as a way out from her undesirable life, yet her married life still carries the same characteristics. And so, without fighting for a satisfactory life she settles with the hand she is dealt. 5Furthermore, Sally, an innocent friend of Esperanza, tries to escape her fathers cruel beatings through marriage, but her circumstances do not change, her husband still treats her as her father has in the past. He wont let her talk on the phone. In addition, he does not let her look out the window.
In addition, he does not like her friends so nobody can visit her unless he is working. Sallys father controlled her and now it is her husband; she thinks that she is escaping when in reality she is just giving the leash to someone else. Sally chose the easiest way out of her life, marriage, she did not see the unfavorablelife of the women near her, she just chose a route to flee, without thinking of her future. 6All in all the women around Esperanza have all taken an easy escape from their surroundings leading them into another life of the same disappointment; and now accept their unhappy consequences, thinking that there is no way-out. Esperanza will not accept and is determined to overcome the unfair fate instructed on the women in her family, such as her great grand mother.
For instance, Esperanza knows that she does not want to end up like her great Grand mother. She looked out the window her whole life like so many women sit their sadness on their elbow. I wonder if she made the best of what she got or was she sorry because she could not be all the things she wanted to be. Esperanza.
I have inherited her name, but I dont want to inherit her place by the window (pg. 11). 7Esperanza does not want to live a life of sadness. She searches for a path that would lead her out of the cycle that has captured her great grand mother and so many women around her. In addition, near the end of the book, Esperanza feels a need to come back and help those who are unable to leave, because she is positive that her fate will change.
One day I will say goodbye to Mango. I am too strong for her to keep me here forever. One day I will go awayto come back. For the ones, I left behind. For the ones who cannot get out (pg.
110). 8Esperanza has a sensitive heart, one that is sympathetic; she does not want to see more people end up like Minerva, Sally, or her great grand mother. She knows that most women will not be able to see light leading out of the darkness, so she wants to be able to show them the way out. Esperanza knows