In “The House on Mango Street” by Sandra Cisneros, one theme of the story is racism. This theme is presented through Esperanza’s lens and the people she encountered on Mango Street and in her neighborhood. Through this theme, the development of different groups and people’s identity is formed by the examples of our theme racism and the different aspects that tie in with the theme.The protagonist, Esperanza experienced the negative effects that impacted her and people who lived in her neighborhood because of the racism the characters experienced in the book. Esperanza’s freedom and confinement she felt become a racial obstacle in this novel, as the protagonist she is frequently confined by the racism that she is experiencing. In the vignette ” Red Clowns” when Esperanza was sexually abused by a man at the carnival, the man provoked her by saying “I love you, I love you little Spanish girl” (pg:100).
The man directly mention Esperanza as a “Spanish girl” rather than just calling her a young girl. Sandra Cisneros indirectly shows that the man took advantage of young Esperanza just because she was Hispanic. The man thinks that just because she was a different race than him, she is of less value, so he takes advantage of Esperanza’s young age and race in order to sexually abuse and mentally disturb her forever.
In this vignette chapter, Sandra Cisneros introduces the idea that race was shown through the man being able to take advantage of sexually with the protagonist. Through this discrimination, Esperanza’s identity was formed not only through the way the man speaks to her, but also through the way he treats her. Racism is taught to people in our society, No one is born racist and that people learn from the society. Racism is learned behavior toward persons with dissimilar physical characteristics. In “Those Who Don’t,” Esperanza explores racism more directly than in any of the story.
Esperanza understands that some people in her neighborhood would indeed frighten an outsider, such as the people with physical or mental handicaps who stand on the street. However, the neighborhood children who live there know those strange people families and histories, so they are not afraid. Esperanza takes comfort in knowing the family connections in that neighborhood, but she also mentions that they are “all brown all around,” which show’s as that racial familiarity and similarity are also keeping her unafraid in her own neighborhood. The text that connect to racism is “Those Who Don’t” by Sandra Cisneros (page 28) ” All brown all around, we are safe. But watch out us drive into a neighborhood of another color and our knees go shakity-shake and our car windows get rolled up tight and our eyes look straight.”(Page:28) “Those who don’t know any better come into our neighborhood scared.
” Before even meeting the people, the outsiders assume the residents are bad people trying to hurt them because that’s what they have heard from others. Without even introducing themselves, they just drive by in their cars judging the “criminals” that line the streets. The residents are judged based on their ethnicity, clothing, general observations, and the beliefs of other outsiders. The outsiders judge others in order to avoid detection of their own flaws without even getting to know the people they’re judging.Sandra Cisneros introduces that the residents of Mango Street identity comes from the judgment of others. They are judged by their appearance- clothing, physical, race- , the Mexicans were defined as “dangerous criminals.
” “People gossip. People are insecure, so they talk about other people so that they won’t be talked about. They point out flaws in other people to make them feel good about themselves. I think at any age or any social class, that’s present,” By Blake Lively.
The quote symbolize how people just feel like treating someone different and talking about them would be a good example to their society which is not. In the book The House on Mango Street the vignette “Gernaldo with No Last Name” Gernaldo was hit by a car, and when he went to the hospital no doctor came to check on him or try to save his life, he was just lying down on his bed slowly dying. It came to a point where he died. According to the book, it states “Only Marin can’t explain why it mattered, the hours and hours, for somebody she didn’t even know. The hospital emergency room. Nobody but an intern working all alone. And maybe if the surgeon would’ve come, maybe if he hadn’t lost so much blood, if the surgeon had only come, they would know who to notify and where.
” In the text it also states “to the hospital people and twice to the police. No address. No name.
Nothing in his pockets. Ain’t it a shame.” When you look through the racial lense of Gernaldo who was dying just experienced racism, one thing should know about racism is that it comes at you in different way one some you might not notice it. Geraldo was always emphasized as a “nobody,” not good enough to even be treated by a doctor when he was in fact badly injured. The protagonist, Esperanza, reveals the concept of racism that was seen through her eyes. The House on Mango Street is set in a community in Chicago, and one level is about building a cultural identity in a society where they are seen as foreign. Throughout the book, Esperanza struggle against the feelings of shame and isolation that come with living in on Mango street – she is ashamed of her shabby house and how her classmates see her as “different.
” Cathy, her first friend in the neighborhood, represents the people who leave when Mexican families move into the neighborhood, and the white people of “Those Who Don’t” who are afraid when they drive past. Esperanza’s struggle against these prejudices leads to a dream of a house of her own—a house she owns, loves, and of which she can be proud of. She tries to find freedom and identity through her writing