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Plot Overview

About the Author

Esperanza is a young Mexican-American

girl who learns that growing up isnt so
easy. In the beginning of the novel,
Esperanza explains that she does not like
her home on mango street and that she
dreams of getting a nice home with her
family. Throughout the story, she
describes the people that live around her
and how she sees them. She also
explains that the people in her
neighborhood are all going through hard
times. She starts to go through puberty
and gains attention from boys. In the
middle of the story, Esperanza runs into
older men that is very flirtatious with her
and even kisses her. At the end, she has
a traumatic experiences with a man at the
fair. A man sexually harasses her as she
frantically calls for her friend, Sally.

Sandra Cisneros was born in Chicago in

1954. She wrote The House on Mango
Street in 1984. Sandra studied at Loyola
University of Chicago and the University
of Iowa. She writes extensively about the
Latina experience in the United States.
She is also known for her poem My
Wicked, Wicked Ways (1987).

Historical Context
The House on Mango Street is a comingof-age story that is based in a barrio;
which is a neighborhood or community
where most of the residents are of
Spanish-speaking origin.

The House on Mango

Sandra Cisneros
Kayla Postadan
18 September 2016

Essential Quotes
In English my name means hope. In
Spanish it means too many letters. It
means sadness, it means waiting.
I want to move like heebie-jeebie, I say
picking up on the cue.

The House on Mango Street is a story
that shows what it is like to grow up in
America as a Latina. It explains what girls
go through as they transition from being a
girl to a woman.

First quote: Page 10, Paragraph 1

Second quote: Page 51, Paragraph

Character Analysis


Motifs and Symbols

Esperanza: The novels protagonist and

narrator. She is approximately 12 years
old and is a Mexican-American girl. She
longs for a best friend and a nicer home.

A theme in The House on Mango Street

is growing up. Esperanza learns that
growing up is hard and very different from
being a child.

A symbol from the story is the shoes that

Esperanza, Rachel, and Lucy wears. It is
a symbol for being a grown woman, in my

Rachel: The younger sister of Lucy and

one of Esperanzas best friends. It is said
that she was born in Chicago

Another theme in the story is that you

should not be ashamed of who you are
and where you come from. Esperanza is
ashamed of her name and how she

Another symbol is the trees that

Esperanza often looks at fondly. I think
that it represents the friends that she
yearns for. She wants people that
understands her and that she
understands and the trees represents
those people.

Lucy: The older sister of Rachel and is

Esperanzas other best friend. In the
novel, it states that she was born in
Sally: Esperanzas more mature friend.
She often leaves Esperanza to go with
boys. Her father is physically abusive and
goes off with a man to get married.
Nenny: Esperanzas little sister who she
is responsible of.
Mama: Esperanzas mother who is very
strong and beautiful in Esperanzas eyes.