Establishing Sisterhood: A Budding Poet’s Responsibility in Sandra Cisneros’s The House on Mango Street
Abstract: This paper attempts to study Esperenza, the Chicana protagonist of Sandra Cisneros’s novel The House on Mango Street, who desires to establish her identity as a woman and a poet to represent the marginalized women of her community. She believes that she needs to come out of the role imposed on her by society to establish herself as a writer and to proclaim her true female identity. Esperanza searches for self-respect. In doing so, she discovers the reasons behind women’s confinement and the sources of patriarchy’s hold over women. She understands that social conditioning plays a vital role in holding women back. In her quest for identity as a Mexican American, she also tries to create a space in literary tradition as she feels a strong desire to speak out for those women of her community who cannot come out of their social imprisonment. She realizes that she must do something for them and finds that writing their untold stories could be a way of paying tribute to them. She has intensely observed their pain, suppression, and unfulfilled desires. So she takes the initiative to break the barriers of patriarchal control to ensure women’s rights in her society. Thus she feels the necessity of establishing a sisterhood to break the patriarchal web and to give due credit to women’s contributions to society, which would allow her and her fellow women to come out of internment and find the route to freedom.
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Published in 2017