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Volume 1 Issue 11

April 2015

Sandra Cisneros’ The House on Mango Street: A Study in Female Bildungsroman
Ms. R. Shobia, 
Assistant Professor, 
Department of English, 
Theivanai Ammal College for Women, 
Villupuram, Tamil Nadu, India
Bildungsroman is a kind of novel that follows the development of a hero from childhood or adolescence into adulthood, through a troubled quest for identity. In a Bildungsroman, the goal is maturity, and the protagonist achieves it gradually with difficulty. The genre often features a main conflict between the main character and society. The term Female Bildungsroman is to defend the representation of women’s experience in writing a necessary means to fulfill the goal of finding a new female Bildung. The central theme of contemporary women’s fiction is the quest for authentic female self-development. It starts from the adolescent protagonist’s coming-of-age or as the mature woman’s awakening to reality of her social and cultural role as a woman and her subsequent attempts to re-examine her life and shape it in accordance with her new feminist consciousness. Sandra Cisneros is a well-known American novelist, short-story writer, essayist and poet. She is one of the first Hispanic-American writers, lauded by literary scholars and critics for works which help bring the perspective of Chicana (Mexican-American) women into the mainstream of literary feminism. In A House on Mango Street (1985), Cisneros creates the character Esperanza, a poor, Hispanic adolescent who longs for a room of her own and a house which she can be proud. Esperanza ponders the disadvantages of choosing marriage over education, the importance of writing as an emotional release, and the sense of confusion associated with growing up. The paper focuses on ‘the Female Bildungsroman’ issues like friendship, ordeals of love, alienation, self-identity, oppression, race, culture, gender issues and society.
Female Bildungsroman; Self-Identity; Gender Issues; Sandra Cisneros; A House on Mango Street.
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Progressive Publishers is a novice publishing enterprise located at Tranquebar, Tamilnadu, India. It primarily publishes university text-books for efficient English language learning and an online scholarly journal entitled Literary Quest. Its primary goal is to promote progressive, secular, socialist and egalitarian thoughts among academicians, researchers and students of English literature. Liberty, Equality, Fraternity and Social Justice are the ideals upon which the whole enterprise rests.