75 pages 2 hours read

Sandra Cisneros


Fiction | Novel | Adult | Published in 2002

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Essay Topics


In Part 2 of Caramelo, Lala tells the story of her grandmother’s life, including her experiences of childhood, marriage, and motherhood. As she relates this story, she is frequently interrupted by the voice of her grandmother. Why do you feel Cisneros chose to include the grandmother’s voice in this part of the novel? What message does this choice send about the intersecting roles of author, reader, and subject?  


Cisneros makes comparisons between the intensely dramatic scenes of telenovelas and the equally—if not more—intensely dramatic landscapes of Lala’s memories. What do you think Cisneros is trying to say with these comparisons?


From the old recuerdo of Narciso in his pinstripe suit to Soledad’s caramelo rebozo, the objects kept by Lala’s family members are containers of memories. Choose at least two objects from Caramelo and analyze how they symbolically contain (and change) the memories their owners attach to them.