Please note! This essay has been submitted by a student.
Growing up, you learn that the world can be a hostile place. In House on Mango Street by Sandra Cisneros, a girl has to go through the obstacles of growing up, not knowing what challenges are. She learns what growing up is all about and how it’s not always a good thing. In A Separate Peace by John Knowles, a boy who has always been a follower to his best friend starts to realize the cons of always being dependent on someone else. And he begins to admit to himself that he may have an enemy that he never knew he had. Esperanza knows the world isn’t an easy place to live in, but as she starts to grow older, she realizes it was nothing like what she thought. Gene Forrester starts to realize, as his mind grows older, that Finny might have been trying to sabotage him which gets him to do things he’d never think of doing before.
Esperanza knows the world isn’t an easy place to live in, but as she starts to grow older, she realizes it was nothing like what she thought. In the vignette called “Red Clowns,” Esperanza is waiting for Sally at a ride in the carnival and she gets taken advantage of by a carnie. This is one of the many times she realizes that not everyone is as good as they seem, “The one who grabbed me by the arm, he wouldn’t let me go. He said I love you, Spanish girl, I love you, and pressed his sour mouth to mine.” (Cisneros, 100). As you can see, she found out that not everyone is a hero. There are people out there who are desperate enough to go to extremes just to have some sort of contact with someone. However, there’s also people who are willing to do anything to feel good. In “Louie, His Cousin & His Other Cousin,” Esperanza talks about how one of her friend’s cousin’s came up in a car that was much nicer than any car they’ve ever seen “… When he drove up in this great big yellow Cadillac with whitewalls and a yellow scarf tied around the mirror” (Cisneros, 24). This shows my point because, as you can see, he stole the car to make himself look and feel good, but he got caught with it and arrested.
Gene Forrester starts to realize, as his mind grows older, that Finny might have been trying to sabotage him which gets him to do things he’d never think of doing before. One example of this happening in the book is when Gene jounces the limb to make Finny fall to the ground, “Holding firmly to the trunk, I took a step toward him, and then my knees bent and I jounced the limb” (Knowles, 59-60). He is shown as the villain at this point. He looked at Finny as the villain and thought that he was out to get him, when Finny had nothing to do with that. Finny was just there to show him a good time. In addition to this, Gene also loses his temper much more after he made that choice to jounce the limb, “I shoved my foot against the rung of his chair and kicked. Leper went over in his chair and collapsed against the floor” (Knowles, 145). Gene, even though he already tried to tell Finny it as on purpose that he jounced the limb, got mad when Leper tried to tell him that he knew Gene jounced it on purpose. This shows that Gene knew he was the criminal in this situation, but he didn’t want to admit it to himself, nor did he want Finny to realize the truth.
So, as you can see, Gene and Esperanza both had so much to learn about the world as they grew up. Esperanza learned that not everyone is good while Gene learned that not everyone is your friend. But in the end, we all need to go through the process of growing up, and we will all find that not everything is as it seems.