The House on Mango Street

1920 Words8 Pages
Feminism in The House On Mango Street In the novel, The House on Mango Street, Sandra Cisneros describes the problems that Latino women face in a society that treats them as second-class citizens. This society is dominated by men who value women only for what they look like, and pay no mind to their personalities or intellectual capabilities. In her novel, Cisneros leads readers to envision the obstacles that Latino women must face everyday in order to be treated equally. A young girl named Esperanza is able to break away from the confines of the men surrounding her. Once Esperanza recognizes that the women on Mango Street are controlled by the men around them, she refuses to conform to confinement and she pursues freedom for women. In The House on Mango Street, men look upon women as objects, whether they are boyfriends, friends, fathers, or husbands. The girls in the novel grow up with the mentality that looks and appearance are the only qualities of value that a woman can possess. Cisneros shows how Latino women are expected to be loyal to their husbands, and that a husband should have complete control of the relationship. However, Cisneros describes the character Esperanza as being different. Although Esperanza is born and raised in the same culture as the women around her, she refuses to accept the society that surrounds her. She is determined to someday remove herself from the oppressive community she lives in. Esperanza is mentally strong and has a talent for telling stories; through her inspirational stories she gives back to the women who raised her by showing them that they can be independent from men and live their own lives. The Latino women and girls in the novel are extremely concerned about their appearances, because they feel that if they are not attractive then they will not be noticed by men. The women are raised to believe that being owned by
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