Literary Analysis of House on Mango Street Vignette 19

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Literary Analysis: The House on Mango Street, Vignette 19: Chanclas Cisneros uses symbolism to develop the theme of insecurity. Esperanza’s shoes symbolize her insecurities. Esperanza’s mother buys her a new dress and new socks for her cousin’s baptism party but she forgets to buy Esperanza new shoes. When they get to the party Esperanza is ashamed of herself because she is wearing old shoes she wears to school with a new dress and new socks. Esperanza’s cousin asks her for a dance but she is too embarrassed by her old shoes that she refuses. Esperanza’s uncle takes her to dance and while dancing everybody cheers for them and Esperanza forgets about her old shoes and feels like a woman. While dancing Esperanza was aware of her cousin’s gaze on her. The awareness of a man's gaze is equated with Esperanza's awakening to her own womanhood. Another major theme in the vignette is one of sexuality because as Esperanza is in a transition state and first experiences her emerging sexuality as a desire to be desired by the boy at the dance. Esperanza is ashamed of her feet and during the baptism she says “My feet growing bigger and bigger” (Cisneros 47). This symbolizes her insecurities growing. The theme of insecurity is common throughout the book. In the previous vignette Esperanza was scolded by a nun who said Esperanza lives in an ugly house across the school and even though she didn’t live there she was too embarrassed to tell the nun that she didn’t live there(Cisneros 45). Another theme in this vignette is sexuality. Esperanza is growing up to become a woman as shown in Vignettes “Marin”, “Boys and Girls”, “Sally”, and “Edna’s Ruthie” in which Esperanza is learning how to be a woman. Esperanza’s shame of her feet is an obstacle of her development in becoming a woman and she has to overcome that shame to become a woman as she did in the vignette. When
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