House Mango Street Sandra Cisnero(book) the Question Essay

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House Mango Street Sandra Cisnero"(book) the question paper: Is book represe

It would be exceedingly difficult to represent all of Latino culture in any book, regardless of how talented the author is. Nonetheless, Sandra Cisneros is that rare breed of author for whom, particularly as it relates to her unique blend of poetry and prose, virtually nothing is impossible. She has been hailed as "a major literary talent" (Cruz, 2010, p. 56). One of her most revered works, The House on Mango Street, details her life and those around her who grew up in the continental United States. Virtually all of the characters (and the vast majority of people that the characters interact with, for that matter) are Latino. Still, the Latino culture is, if nothing else, extremely diverse and as variegated a group of people as one can find on the earth itself. This fact takes on a particular preeminence when one considers the bevy of Latinos existent in Miami. When considering some of the prime characteristics of the latter, as well as a number of discernible facets of the aforementioned work of Cisneros', it becomes critically apparent that this piece of literature is not an appropriate book to represent all Latino culture in Miami.

Although there are many reasons for why the preceding thesis is true, one of the most salient of them is that the degree of diversity found among Latinos in Miami is barely alluded to, and not necessarily one of the dominant themes in The House on Mango Street. Cisneros herself is a Mexican-American -- this quasi-autobiographical (Wissman, 2007, p. 17) work largely details the coming of age of a young girl transitioning to womanhood among other Mexicans and Mexican-Americans.
It is noteworthy, then, that although there are several Mexicans living in Miami, the vast majority of Latinos are not actually of Mexican descent. There is a substantial Cuban population, as well as many different countries from South America represented in abundance in this city including Venezuelans, Argentineans, and Peruvians (just to name a few). And, although every character encountered in Cisneros' book is not Mexican, the vast majority of them are. Cisneros, then, does not detail the full spectrum of Latino life and merely focuses on certain aspects of Mexican-American life. As such, this book is circumscribed in its depiction of Latino culture -- especially when one considers the many varieties of this culture that are found within a major metropolitan such as Miami and its surrounding areas in South Florida.

In addition to the limited cultural aspects of Cisneros' book (which details merely one of the may Latino cultures found in Miami), it is important to realize that there are also certain socio-economic factors found within the author's book that are incongruent with, or perhaps simply not totally reflective of the Latino-American culture in Miami. For the most part, Esperanza, her family, and the vast majority of her friends found on Mango Street, are in middle to lower half of the socio-economic order (Renner, 2005, p. 44). Esperanza and her family are not necessarily poor, but they certainly live in a neighborhood in which….....

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