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The House on Mango Street By Sandra Cisneros
Sandra Cisneros • About Sandra Cisneros • born in Chicago in l 954, the third child and only daughter in a family of seven children. studied at Loyola University of Chicago (B. A. English 1976) and the University of Iowa (M. F. A. Creative Writing 1978).
Sandra Cisneros • • worked as a teacher and counselor to high-school dropouts, as an artist-in-the schools taught creative writing at every level except first grade and pre-school a college recruiter, an arts administrator visiting writer at a number of universities including the University of California, Berkeley, and the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor.
Sandra Cisneros • • The House on Mango Street, first published in 1983, won the Before Columbus Foundation's American Book Award in 1985, and is required reading in middle schools, high schools, and universities across the country. It has sold over two million copies since its initial publication and is still selling strongly.
Sandra Cisneros • books have been translated into over a dozen languages, including Spanish, Galician, French, German, Dutch, Italian, Norwegian, Japanese, Chinese, Turkish, and, most recently, into Greek, Thai, and Serbo-Croatian.
Sandra Cisneros • • • Born December 20, 1954 in Chicago, Sandra Cisneros is an American novelist, short-story writer, essayist, and poet. Cisneros is one of the first Hispanic-American writers who has achieved commercial success. She is lauded by literary scholars and critics for works which help bring the perspective of Chicana (Mexican-American) women into the mainstream of literary feminism.
Sandra Cisneros • Cisneros received her B. A. from Loyola University in 1976 and her M. F. A from the University of Iowa Writers' Workshop in 1978. • This workshop marks an important turning point in her career as a writer. • Cisneros had periodically written poems and stories while growing up, but it was the frustrations she encountered at the Writer's Workshop that inspired Cisneros' realization that her experiences as a Latina woman were unique and outside the realm of dominant American culture.
Sandra Cisneros • • Thus, Cisneros decided to write about conflicts directly related to her upbringing, including divided cultural loyalties, feelings of alienation, and degradation associated with poverty. These specific cultural and social concerns, coupled with Cisneros' feelings of alienation as a Latina writer, came to life five years later in The House on Mango Street (1983).
Sandra Cisneros • • Cisneros was the only daughter among seven children, and her brothers attempts to make her assume a traditional female role is reflected in the feminist strains of her writing, glorifying heroines who dream of economic independence and celebrating women. The family frequently moved between the United States and Mexico because of her father's homesickness for his native country and his devotion to his mother who lived there.
Sandra Cisneros • • • Cisneros often felt homeless and displaced. She began to read extensively, finding comfort in such works as Virginia Lee Burton's The Little House and Lewis Carroll's Alice's Adventures in Wonderland. Today, Cisneros' works give both solace and realistic lessons about feelings which, as a child, she felt were uniquely hers, namely cultural division, loneliness and shame.
House on Mango Street • • A prime example of how Cisneros' writing speak to the experiences of the forgotten or invisible of American society is The House on Mango Street. In this work, widely celebrated by critics, teachers, adults and adolescents alike, Cisneros introduces the reader to Esperanza- a poor, Latina adolescent who longs for a room of her own and a house of which she can be proud.
Sandra Cisneros • • By reaching deep into her Chicana-Mexican heritage and articulating sensations of displacement and longing, Sandra Cisneros has created a lasting tribute to those who must conquer similar battles as she, and has thereby left a lasting friend for all who have let their imaginations build a house all their own. Classic. Note on House on Mango Street
Key Facts • Full Title · The House on Mango Street • Author · Sandra Cisneros • Type of Work · Novel made up of interconnected vignettes • Genre · Coming-of-age story
Key Facts • • • Time and Place Written · Early 1980 s, United States Narrator · Esperanza Cordero Point of View · Esperanza narrates in the first-person present tense. • She focuses on her day-to-day activities but sometimes narrates sections that are just a series of observations. • In later vignettes Esperanza talks less about herself and more about the people around her. • In these sections she is never fully omniscient, but she sometimes stretches her imagination to speculate on the characters' feelings and futures.
Key Facts • • • Tone · Earnest, hopeful, intimate, with very little distance between the implied author and the narrator tense · Mostly present tense, with intermittent incidents told in the future and past tenses Setting (time) · A period of one year Setting (place) · A poor Latino neighborhood in Chicago protagonist · Esperanza
Key Facts • Protagonist · Esperanza • Major Conflict · Esperanza struggles to find her place in her neighborhood and in the world.
Themes • Themes are the fundamental and often universal ideas explored in a literary work. • The Power of Language • The Struggle for Self-Definition • Sexuality vs. Autonomy • Women's Unfulfilled Responsibilities to Each Other
Motifs • Motifs are recurring structures, contrasts, or literary devices that can help to develop and inform the text's major themes. • Names • Falling • Women by Windows
Symbols • Symbols are objects, characters, figures, or colors used to represent abstract ideas or concepts. • Shoes/feet • Trees • Poetry