Analysis of a House on Mango Street

Essay by fitzdogg85High School, 11th grade April 2003

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Analysis of House of Mango Street

The narrator of House of Mango Street has experienced a rough life. Esperanza comes from a poor Hispanic family who is forced to travel around looking for a decent place to live. In her past she has struggled with racism and judgments because of her poor background. Despite all this, Esperanza is able to overcome her differences and live a fulfilling childhood. She is able to do this with the help of friends like Rachel, Lucy, Marin, and Minerva as well as with knowledge she acquires from simply living life. As a result of living on Mango Street, Esperanza acquires many life lessons on issues such as racism, sex, moral values, and death. Esperanza eventually finds herself through writing, and the past that has troubled her in turn generates her writing.

Esperanza lived a depressing and dangerous childhood. First she had to deal with racism when her friend Cathy blatantly explained that their family must move away to avoid the influx of Hispanic immigration.

Next she experiences Marin, Louie and his cousins, she witnesses the cops arresting the man for stealing a Cadillac. Esperanza sees the hardships of Rosa Vargas, a neighborhood woman left to care for many children after her husband has left her, and Esperanza can't help but see the tragedy in this. In addition to this, Esperanza must face the sad truth of the status women have in society. A neighborhood girl, Alicia, is left to do all the cooking and cleaning in place of her mother. During her time at school, Esperanza is brought to tears by the cruelty of the other children. They laugh and stare at her because she can only afford to eat a rice sandwich for lunch. Esperanza is forced into the work world to make...