How regret they have for losing their individuality

Topic: ArtFrida Kahlo
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Last updated: September 8, 2019

How does Cisneros use dystopian elements in ‘The House On Mango Street’ to signify the meaningfulness of Esperanza’s achievements?Intro: Cisneros’ use of dystopian elements in ‘The House On Mango Street’ in the form of the female stereotype, oppressive male characters, and the desire to escape, present Esperanza as the dystopian protagonist and signifies the meaningfulness of her achievements.The characters Mama, Rosa Vargas, and Minerva display the idea of the female stereotype in the lives they lead and the regret they have for losing their individuality and becoming just another housewife.

The characters Sally, Rafaela, and Mamacita display characters who are under the control of the men in their lives, they no longer dictate their own actions and are afraid to voice their true feelings.The characters Cathy, Marin, and Alicia display characters with a strong desire to escape the community, and feel a heavy sense of being trapped in the community. Esperanza represents the dystopian protagonist in the story, not only does she recognize the flaws in her community, but she also takes action and works towards escaping the dystopia that is her community.Body Paragraph 1:TS: Cisneros uses the female stereotype to present the idea of an ‘ideal woman’ and what every woman is expected to become, by losing their individuality and submitting to the expectations of the community.

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P1: A Smart Cookie: Esperanza’s own mother is a character that has become trapped by the female stereotype, her many talents and aspirations have gone to waste as she has become another ordinary housewife. “I could’ve been somebody you know? My mother says and sighs.”, “She used to draw when she had time.

Now she draws with a needle and a thread, little knotted rosebuds, tulips made of silk thread.” – Esperanza’s mother saying “I could have been somebody” represents that she knew she had opportunities but was unable to act on them because of the female stereotype, thus losing her sense of individuality.P2: There Was An Old Woman…: Rosa Vargas is a much older woman that has lived the female stereotype for so long, and has had her spirit broken to the point where she doesn’t care for her own kids anymore. “Rosa Vargas’ kids are too many and too much. It’s not her fault you know, except she is their mother and only one against so many.”, “They are bad those Vargases, and how can they help it with only one mother who is tired all the time from buttoning and bottling and babying, and who cries every day for the man who left without even leaving a dollar for bologna or a note explaining how come.” – Rosa Vargas’ life has been reduced to buttoning, bottling, and babying, this implies that she no longer has hobbies or free time to be herself and must play the role of housewife constantly.P3: Minerva Writes Poems: Minerva is a young woman who has already surrendered herself to the female stereotype, and has lost her freedom as a result of becoming a trapped housewife.

Minerva, Roman goddess of war and wisdom, although her name implies she has the potential to be special she is still just another housewife trapped in the female stereotype. “Minerva is only a little bit older than me but already she has two kids and a husband who left.”, “Minerva.

I don’t know which way she’ll go. There is nothing I can do.” – The name Minerva is ironic as it is the name of a Roman goddess, which implies that she is special, however she has fallen into the role of a housewife all the same.Body Paragraph 2: TS: Cisneros uses oppressive male characters to represent the idea of a totalitarian government within the community, and the many restrictions to freedom that women are given in the community.P1: Rafaela Who Drinks…: Rafaela’s lifestyle represents that of a woman who has been trapped into the female stereotype and controlled by an abusive and neglectful husband. She is literally trapped in her own house, as her husband locks her in, “Rafaela who is still young but getting old from leaning out the window so much, gets locked indoors because her husband is afraid Rafaela will run away.

“, “Rafaela leans out the window and leans on her elbow and dreams her hair is like Rapunzel’s.” – Rafaela’s actions are dictated by her husband, and yet she still longs for something more. Her leaning by the window is an allusion to Rapunzel trapped in the tower before she was rescued, only in this community no one is coming to save Rafaela.P2: Linoleum Roses: The idea of a woman sitting by the window is ridiculed, as Sally cannot even do that under her husband’s control.

Her hopes for a loving husband have been destroyed and replaced by a man who restricts her freedom and makes her afraid to voice her true thoughts. “She says she is in love, but I think she did it to escape.”, “Except he won’t let her talk on the telephone. And he doesn’t let her look out the window. And he doesn’t like her friends, so nobody gets to visit her unless he is working.”, “She sits at home because she is afraid to go outside without his permission.” – Sally, although newly married, is already experiencing what many other women in the community’s lives are like.

Her being afraid to even leave the house strengthens the idea that she has no free will, and her actions are influenced heavily by her husband.P3: No Speak English: Mamacita’s lifestyle and her restriction to the household, due to her size and her husband’s control of her, is another representation of a man’s grip on the actions of a woman in the community and strengthens the representation of men as the form of a totalitarian government in the community. “Whatever her reasons, whether she is fat, or can’t climb the stairs, or is afraid of English, she won’t come down.”, “She sits all dat by the window and plays the Spanish radio…”, “Sometimes the man gets disgusted. He starts screaming and you can hear it all the way down the street.” – Mamacita being afraid of “English” could be symbolism for the fact that if she disobeys her husband he will scream at her in English, therefore she has associated English with her husband’s rage.

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