Monday, 6 May 2013

The House of Scorpion Characterization: Maria

The House of Scorpion Characterization: Maria

Maria Mendoza is an oval and static character that takes the role of the daughter of a US Senator and as  the younger sister, of Emilia (Farmer, 10 and 13) in the House of the Scorpion. Although we are given some initial and basic information of Maria, it is not enough for the readers to fully and deeply know and connect with her. Maria remains static throughout the novel because she consistently and continuously saves Matt. This same process occurs when Maria is angered with another character as well, each time that something is done to upset her, Maria eventually and almost instantly forgives them. Some may argue that Maria is a stock character because she is the classic heroine that authors usually include into their novels. Through the progress of House of the Scorpion, Maria acts as Matt's heroine and friend; encouraging him to develop as a character.

 She is a kind, yet loud girl who has a huge impact on the protagonists, Matt. Throughout the novel we see many instances where she acts as his best friend and heroine, an example of this would be at the church ceremony (Farmer, 154 and 155). Although Matt is declared to have no soul and is shunned by the priests, Maria comes to his side and defies her father's commands. She rescues Matt from the public humiliation and drags him along with her. Later on she says to Matt, "Gosh I missed you" (Farmer, 155) and gives him a kiss to mend their friendship. From earlier passages we can conclude and infer that Maria is the same age as Matt, giving them a closer and mutual relationship with one another. Maria is a character who changes Matt and helps him through his hardships in the novel.

This photo truly reminds me of Maria internally and physically. In a lot of ways, I can see Maria as having tanned skin and brown hair because of heritage and culture (Mexican). The fire in the background shows us her unchanging personality; haughty and bold.
Please note that this image does not belong to me and full credit goes to


Maria is a very loud and righteous character who is able to voice her thoughts and emotions. Although some may describe her as rude, Maria always thinks of the well being of others before herself  and ensures that they are well and safe. From the beginning of the story to the end, Maria stays static in her actions, her speech, and her views on clones and Matt as a whole. One of the first times where we see Maria defending Matt would be on pg. 66. In this section, Maria convinces Tam Lin that Matt was not guilty during the fight between Tom and Matt. In fact she even says that although Matt had hit Tom first, it was Tom who first teased him. This steered Matt out of trouble and in a safer zone with the body guard. In many ways Maria acts as the heroine for not only Matt but for Tom as well. In The House of the Scorpion, Matt is the character who is impacted the most by Maria, however we can certainly see places where Maria defends and helps Tom as well; an example can be found on pg. 104. Overall Maria is a haughty and impulsive girl that is able to save Matt from the midst of his troubles.


Although we aren't exposed and able to directly read into Maria's thoughts, we can infer that Maria is always thinking for the good of other people.
**To look into more about Maria's thoughts please refer back to the "Speech" section of the post.**


Maria has a colossal effect on Matt and she effects his actions; indirectly and directly as well. One of the first times that she saved Matt was on pg. 30. In this particular scene setting, Rosa has imprisoned Matt and has deprived him of his dinner. Later on Maria comes and saves Matt by giving him food and most importantly her company. In this one line, "I'm going to put them into your mouth one at a time -- but you have to promise not to bite me." (Farmer, 30) We can see that Maria is not sickened nor disgusted by Matt but instead she is trying to save him while being cautious. We can clearly see that Maria is obviously curious as to who Matt is. While they eat, they share stories making their connection stronger and more complex as the novel progresses. Throughout the story, Maria continues with similar acts and is able to provide Matt safety and comfortableness. She acts as his safe guide and heroine.


Although Maria is quite small she has a big heart and big dreams. Maria's actions are usually associated with Matt and the well being of others. When Matt is taunted or mistreated Maria never fails to come to his side and protect him. She is his saviour and heroine. A clear example of this would be found on pgs. 153-154, when the priests tells Matt that he has no soul and must leave. During this moment Maria quickly comes to his side and pulls him along with her, rescuing him from public humiliation. Although this is simply one example we are able to depict several events where similar outcomes have occurred.


Maria is slim and tall. From what the novel tells us we can infer that her hair is black and her eyes are dark brown (Farmer, 13). Matt describes Maria as "[one of] the most beautiful thing[s] he'd ever seen" (Farmer, 152). She has shoulder length hair and tanned skin. She has small, soft, and warm hands and she wears a soft spicy perfume that is able to make Matt head over heels for her.

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