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Briana Leyba

My Name

In the reading My Name, Cisneros explained how women are discriminated against in their own race as well as other minorities. The character doesn’t wish to have her Grandmother’s name, in fear of also inheriting her Grandmother’s “place at the window”. She doesn’t wish to have her name. The character is scared to be in her situation, of being cemented at a window and watching opportunities pass her by like her grandmother had. The Grandfather in this excerpt shows dominance and sees the Grandmother as an object.

Cisneros conveyed how women are seen as objects by stating how the great grandfather threw a sack over her Grandmother’s head and took her off to marry him, as if she were a fancy chandelier (Cisneros p. 10). Today someone would face incarceration for doing something like that in the United States, times have definitely changed and gender roles in minorities have greatly evolved as well. The Grandfather showed Machisimo, which is an ideology where men have power over women, and dominate the public realm(Fernandez 2000). Machisimo has since decreased and women are seen more and more as equals, more women are working outside of the home and sharing in economic necessity, as well as increased mobility in social relations, these factors point to more equal gender relations (Fernandez 2000).

Sabrina Ferdin


Huma 2319

February 14, 2020

Boys and Girls

Sandra Cisneros’ narrative “Boys and Girls” from House on Mango Street talks about how different the lives of boys and girls are. She speaks of how she takes care of her younger sister and that her brothers have no responsibilities as well as do not want to be seen or speak to their sisters outside of the home (Cisneros 8). She also notes at the end that she feels as though she is “a balloon tied to an anchor” (Cisneros 9) because she is tied to her sister to take care of her.

This narrative relates to the ideas of typical gender roles of men and women throughout history that have carried on into today’s ideas of who should be taking care of the children versus who should be the money maker for the home. As one study notes, although the percentages are increasing for men to stay at home with the children, it is more likely for a woman to be a stay at home parent rather than the man. As well as one main reason for a man to be a stay at home parent is due to lack of employment as “one-third of whom reported they were home for this reason” (Livingston). It seems as though women are still tied down to the idea that women should be the main care takers of the family even today.

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