Black, white, and orange illustration of Esperanza standing in front of a building or structure

The House on Mango Street

by Sandra Cisneros

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Hips Summary

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Last Updated January 9, 2023.

Girls develop wider hips very suddenly. “One day you wake up and they are there.” Esperanza and her friends are skipping over a jump rope and talking about hips. Rachel says you need hips to hold a baby while you are cooking, and Lucy says you need them to dance. Nenny says that you might turn into a man if you do not get them, and Esperanza repeats what Alicia told her, that the hips identify a skeleton as being female or male. The girls jump over the rope, making up rhymes about hips as they do so. Only Nenny does not understand and sings an old song which has nothing to do with hips.

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