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Commentary on Esperanza Rising Essay


Esperanza Rising, by Pam Munoz Ryan, is the story of a Mexican girl who becomes a migrant worker in California. Making such a big move in life is never easy, but Esperanza must rise above even more problems than most immigrants do. In one year, she aces many difficulties that change her and make her a better person.

Migrants often come to the United States because they have been poor all their lives, but that is not the case with Esperanza. She grows up on a big ranch in Mexico, and her family is rich and important. Esperanza spends her time going to school, learning to love the ranch and being spoiled by Papi, her father. Her main worry is what kind of dress she will wear to the next fancy party. When Papi dies the day before her 13th birthday, Esperanza and her mother find themselves without a home or a way to make money in Mexico. They decide to move to the United States. In the beginning of their journey to California, Esperanza looks down on the other migrants. She is shocked by the living conditions in the migrant camps and believes that the other workers are not as intelligent as she is. Esperanza quickly learns that the peasants are smart, even smarter than she is in many ways. They know how to survive and support each other. She soon realizes that dignity and honor come from the way someone lives life, not from family status.

Esperanza now faces the same problems that the other Mexican immigrants do. She learns that immigrants have to deal with poverty, prejudice, and bosses who cheat them. Still, like other immigrants, she hopes that in America she will never run out of chances. Esperanzas problems soon get worse instead of better. Her mother is very sick and has to go to the hospital for many weeks, leaving Esperanza alone. Mama has always been a loving woman who faces her troubles with great strength, and Esperanza has always depended on her for support. Now Esperanza must be strong, and her mothers example helps her survive. In the end, Esperanza learns to make the best of what she has. She has learned to love her new land and now realizes that worrying about dresses is not the most important thing. Esperanza, whose name means hope in Spanish, says, Do not ever be afraid to start over.

Thats good advice for everyone. I think that it was an over- all great story. I think the other did a very great job with this particular piece. It has a very great message and story to it. I actually enjoyed reading it.

I might read another book from this author for another book report or something. It was a really great book and I dont normally like books. The author did a great job getting the message across. You never know when everything will get taken away from you. You should never look down on other people because someday you might be in their same situation. Those statements right there is why I chose this book.

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