The House on Mango Street Essay - Critical Essays

Sandra Cisneros

Sample Essay Outlines

Topic #1
Discuss the narrative voice and technique of The House on Mango Street.

Outline
I. Thesis Statement: In The House on Mango Street, Cisneros employs a unique narrative voice and technique that effectively reflects the theme of the novel.

II. Esperanza as the narrative voice
A. Simple vocabulary
B. Bilingual—use of Spanish terms and code switching
C. Poetic use of language

III. Structure of the novel
A. Brevity
B. Fragmentation
C. Cumulative effect of vignettes
D. Circular structure

IV. Conclusion

Topic #2
Discuss The House on Mango Street as a feminist work of literature.

Outline
I. Thesis Statement: The House on Mango Street is a novel that expresses many feminist ideals.

II. Feminism
A. Definition of feminism
B. Feminism vs. machismo

III. Women denied equality and independence in The House on Mango Street
A. Women denied physical freedom
B. Women denied sexual equality
C. Women denied educational equality
D. Women denied opportunity to determine identity and place

IV. Conclusion

Topic #3
Discuss the symbolism of the house in The House on Mango Street.

Outline
I. Thesis Statement: In The House on Mango Street, the house is the most important symbol.

II. A “real” house vs. house on Mango Street

III. House as physical space

IV. House as a metaphor for the self
A. Home in the heart

V. Conclusion