Die Heuning Pot Literature Guide
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Analysis

Literary Devices in The House on Mango Street

Symbolism, Imagery, Allegory

We've talked a little bit about houses in The House on Mango Street in the section "What's Up With the Title?" so you might want to check out that section first before you start here. But the title...

Setting

The setting is central to The House on Mango Street – after all, it's even mentioned in the title. Esperanza and her family have just moved to a poor, mostly Latino neighborhood in a city tha...

Narrator Point of View

Our narrator is a young girl named Esperanza Cordero. For the most part, we see things from her point of view. Esperanza explains what her new house on Mango Street looks like, for example, and sha...

Genre

A little girl tells the story of growing up in a bad neighborhood, and how poetry becomes her ticket out of there. Kind of like Dangerous Minds without the Michelle Pfeiffer character. (Cue Coolio....

Tone

It's impossible to ignore the critical lens through which the author portrays many of the social ills in this book. Men beat their daughters and wives. An immigrant is allowed to bleed to death in...

Writing Style

OK, you know that really great introduction to the 25th anniversary edition of The House on Mango Street that we keep telling you to read? It's really helpful in understanding why Sandra Cisneros w...

What's Up With the Title?

It could be said that this is the story of a house. A house on Mango Street. Pretty straightforward, right? But right off the bat the title has us asking ourselves a few questions. Whose house is i...

What's Up With the Ending?

The last chapter of The House on Mango Street is a vignette entitled "Mango Says Goodbye Sometimes." The eight little (and we do mean little) paragraphs of this segment of Esperanza's story do a lo...

Tough-o-Meter

One of the reasons this book is so fantastic is that Cisneros manages to write in a way that is both accessible and beautiful. If The House on Mango Street were a hiking trail, it would be a walk i...

Plot Analysis

OK, so at first glance The House on Mango Street may not appear to be a good candidate for a Classic Plot Analysis. The structure of the novel isn't very novel-esque – each chapter can be tak...

Booker's Seven Basic Plots Analysis: Voyage and Return

Esperanza moves to Mango Street.A young Esperanza Cordero is suddenly forced by a plumbing accident out of the world of apartment-living to which she has grown accustomed, and into the world of Man...

Three Act Plot Analysis

Again, The House on Mango Street doesn't necessarily fit perfectly into this kind of plot analysis, since it's not a novel in the strictest sense of the word. This is how we'd film the movie. How w...

Trivia

Sandra Cisneros refuses to have her writings included in any anthology that uses the word Hispanic. She regards the label "Hispanic" to be "a repulsive slave name" because it refers to those people...

Steaminess Rating

The House on Mango Street is a coming-of-age story. So, it sort of goes without saying that it's got sex in it. After all, part of growing up is figuring out what sex is all about, and our protagon...

Allusions

The Waterbabies (23.12)Lewis Carroll, "The Walrus and the Carpenter" (26.10)Cleopatra (32.3)Minerva is the Roman equivalent of the Greek Athena. (33.1)Rip Van Winkle (38.5)Tarzan (9.5)Avon (10.2)Th...
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