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Copy of The House on Mango Street: Bums in the Attic
Transcript of Copy of The House on Mango Street: Bums in the Attic
March 1, 2012
In the vignette "Bums in the Attic," from the book the House on Mango Street by Sandra Cisneros, Esperanza wants to one day leave Mango Street but she will stay true to herself and help those less fortunate, giving the "bums" a feeling of acceptance that Esperanza never received.
Theme Statement and Thesis Statement
"One day I'll own my own house, but I won't forget who I am or where I came from."
The meaning behind this is that Esperanza
will some day move away but she will return
and not forget her true culture.
This contributes to the purpose of the
identity theme. Esperanza states she
will be true to herself and this is
shown in other vignettes, like
"Mango Says Goodbye
Summary of Vignette
This vignette is about Esperanza and her family going to a house on a hill on Sundays, but Esperanza doesn't want to visit because it makes her feel ashamed of her own home. She feels that the people who live on hills "sleep so close to the stars, they forget about those of us who live too much on earth" (Cisneros 86) "They have nothing to do with last week's garbage or fear of rats... Nothing wakes them but the wind" (Cisneros 87). One day Esperanza wants to have her own house but she doesn't want to forget who she is or where she came from. She wants to offer bums on the street to stay in her attic. "Floorboards will squeak upstairs. The attic grumble. Rats? they'll ask. Bums, I'll say, and I'll be happy." (Cisneros 87)
"People who live on hills sleep so close to the stars they forget those of us who live to much on earth." (Cisneros 86)
This shows that Esperanza feels that the higher class people are self-centered, unlike her lower class society.
"Some days after dinner, guests and I will sit in front a fire. Floorboards will squeak upstairs. The attic will grumble." (Cisneros 87)
Personification gives the attic where the bums are staying life and sound.
"I want a house on a hill like the ones with the gardens where Papa works." (Cisneros 86)
The alliteration catches your attention and draws you into reading.
"I don't tell them I'm ashamed-
all of us staring out the window
like the hungry." (Cisneros 86)
Esperanza feels less than the people who live in the nice houses on the hill. She doesn't want to look at what she can't have any longer, so she doesn't go on Sunday outings because she's embarrassed of her family and their social status.
This contributes to the society/class
theme because she realizes
the difference in class.
"Rats? they'll ask.
Bums, I'll say, and I'll be happy." (Cisneros 87)
Esperanza realizes that she wants to help others so they don't have to live on the streets or in poverty. She also doesn't want to end up like the people who live on the hill and forget about those below them and in need.
This also contributes to the society/class theme. She wants to be higher in society but she still wants to be true to herself.
In conclusion, figurative language helps you understand the theme and helps you visualize whats happening throughout the novel.
This vignette shows how Esperanza goes from one realization to another about society, class, and her own views.