Identity In Esperanza's House On Mango Street

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Esperanza’s Odyssey

Esperanza’s journey of self-identification is apparent in the novel “House on Mango Street”. Her hopes of leaving the barrio were clearly shown in different vignettes: “House on Mango Street”, “Bums in the attic”, “Beautiful and Cruel”, and so on. Her process of self-identification will entail her realizing that she is growing more mature, figuring out her sexuality, and understanding her culture as a Latina. Right off the bat, on page 6, you notice Esperanza immaturity. She does not appreciate where she lives. She wants a house of her own. She realizes that she wants to have a better life, an actual home. With immaturity, brings insecurity. She is insecure about her life. She is even insecure about her name. On page …show more content…

In the vignette “The Family of Little Feet” you experience Esperanza’s first encounter men. As she takes off her socks and puts the high heels on, she says that her feet are no longer hers but now she has a long long leg. As she goes in the streets with her shoes, she gets the attention from men that she has not seen before. Mr. Benny wants them to take the shoes off, a boy on a homemade bicycle calls out and tells the girls to lead him to heaven, and a bum man attempts to kiss the girls. This is her first experience of sexuality in the sense that boys notice her and want to kiss her. Though she doesn’t seem ready yet as she says “We are tired of being beautiful”. Another example of her growing maturity is in the vignette “Hips”. It seems like all of the sudden her hips are there. They are different, they are larger, they define you as a woman. You now tell the difference from a man and a woman through their hips. In the beginning of the vignette, you notice she sings a song that “I like the boys and the boys like me. Yes, no, maybe so.” This is a sign of her growing. She went to not recognizing or talking to boys in the beginning, to asking herself if she likes boys. Another example of her noticing boys is in the Vignette, Sire. She dreams of a boy holding her and kissing her. She is now having dreams about boys. This is a sign of growth. Esperanza is interested and fully aware of boys. …show more content…

Though by realizing this, she needed to mature mentally. She attempts to break the barriers of typical Latin culture and become someone else in this world. By the end of the novel, she does not let her background define who she going to be but rather a starting point on who she is going to become. Esperanza is willing to do something so many Latina women

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