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The House on Mongo Street

The House on Mongo Street

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Published by azbm_mir
The House on Mongo Street
The House on Mongo Street

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Published by: azbm_mir on May 01, 2010
Copyright:Attribution Non-commercial


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Being Strong Woman Needs an Independent Identıty&Being an Independent Woman, Needs Being StrongIn
The House on Mongo Street 
Sandra Cisneros creats a young girl character who is trying to own an independent ıdentity. I think ,the message that Cisneros gives inall the forty-four vignettes in her work is that; Esperanza as a young Chicano who doesn’tlike either cutting her relation with her community,or her destiny be controled by anyother one rather than herelf.Cisneros uses the metaphore of “ house” to show how the boys’s world is separatedfrom the girls’s; “The boys and the girls live in separated worlds…to say me and Nennyinside the house”(Cisneros,8).It seems that she describes the social constraints of thewomen and their dependent identity through Esperanza’s point of view in Mongo streetneighborhood; “…he won’t let her talk on the telephone.And he doesn’t let her look outthe window…”(102).In my opinion Cisneros indirectly referes to women’s forgivness, blames them for their fault which keeps them more dependent and that might be the reason for mentioningmen’s cruality in some of the short stories like as: “Minerva Writes Poems” in
The Houseon Mongo Stree
; “one day she is through and lets him know enough is enough. Out thedoor…then he is sorry and she opens the door again.Same story”(85).In addition Cisneros calls her created character Esperanza,and not only givesdifferent definitions of the name but also talks about its pre-owner’s,thegrandmother,destination as a woman in thatsociety to show the depth of the problem of 
 belonging or dependent identity; “I have inherited her name, but I don’t want to inherither place by the window”(11). Cinsneros calls those dependent women as “women by thewindow” through Esperanza’s language to show what have these women paid in price of owning something or being beloged both willingly or by force.They were emprisoned in their owned houses and a good example is; "And thestory goes she never forgave him. She looked out the window her whole life, the way somany women sit their sadness on an elbow. I wonder if she made the best with what shegot or was she sorry because she couldn't be all the things she wanted to be”(11). Inanother quot to show the sad face of the early marriage of those young girls who couldn’tget an independent identity is “Linoleum Roses” short storyin this book; “Sally says shelikes being married… She sits at home because she is afraid to go outside without his permission.She looks at all the things they own…”(102).Consequently Cisneros follows a process in
The House on Mongo Street 
which will pave the way for Esperanzo to make decision of being an independent and strong womanamong her community. By paying attention to what Esperanza says in the first kognettewe as readers can notice how she will react step by step toward the end of this novel ;
I had to look to where she pointed…You live there?The way she said it made mefeel like nothing”(5).However, later such feeling might have created or better to say caused an enough power or strength for deciding to be an independent girl; “ one day I will pack my bags of  books and paper.One day I will say goodbye to Mongo.I am too strong for her to keep mehere forever.One day I will go away”(110).
By following the process in the novel I think that Cisneros’s aim of creating acharcter like Sally in a short kognette in a same tittle of “Sally”, is to say that ; Esperanzaas the one who tries to get her destiny in her control can be a good symbolic character for other girls to free themselves from those social bonds, when she writes ; “Sally, do yousometimes wish you didn’t have to go home? Do you wish yoır feet would one day keepwalking and take you far away from Mongo street,far away…and never have to think who likes and doesn’tlike you…wouldn’t have to worry what people said because younever beloged here anyway and nobody could make you sad… and no one could call thatcrazy”(83).Furtheremore she does’nt want to get away from her society becase she says; “Then Ididn't know what to say. It was as if she could read my mind, as if she knew what I hadwished for, and I felt ashamed for having made such a selfish wish...you must remember to come back.for the ones who cannot leave as easily as you”(105). Then at the end of the process which are followed in the short stories in this novel it seems that she is informingher readers of her mission of helping her community in her own way by writing her lastsentences, which is the best message to her own nation; “They will not know I have goneaway to come back. For the ones I left behind. For the ones who cannot out”(110).Finally, using the metaphore of house completes Espernaz reaction toward the end of the novel in “A House of My Own” kognette when she says; “Not a flat. Not anapartment in back. Not a man’s house. Not a daddyy’s. A house all my own.With my porch and my pillow, my pretty purple petunias.My books and my stories...clean as paper  before the poem”(108).

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