The House on Mango Street
Society and Class Quotes Page 2
How we cite our quotes:
Cathy's father will have to fly to France one day and find her great great distant grand cousin on her father's side and inherit the family house. How do I know this is so? She told me so. In the meantime they'll just have to move a little farther north from Mango Street, a little farther away every time people like us keep moving in. (5.4)
When Esperanza lets us know that her only source of information about Cathy's noble heritage is Cathy herself, we know we have reason to doubt the story. Why does Cathy feel it's so important to claim an aristocratic, European heritage?
Don't talk to them, says Cathy. Can't you see they smell like a broom? (6.6)
Cathy's tendency to pretend to be superior to her neighbors suggests that she's very insecure. Do she and the other residents of Mango Street belong to different classes of society, or are Cathy's feelings of superiority an invention to make herself feel better?
Those who don't know any better come into our neighborhood scared. They think we're dangerous. They think we will attack them with shiny knives. They are stupid people who are lost and got here by mistake. (12.1)
Esperanza notices that no one who doesn't live there comes to Mango Street on purpose – people from other neighborhoods only wind up there "by mistake," when they get lost.