The Character of Esteban in The House of the Spirits

Satisfactory Essays
The Character of Esteban in The House of the Spirits

Allende portrays Esteban as having a strong and harsh character in the novel, The House of the Spirits. Yet, after leaving, his mother and sister, and starting a new and independent life, Esteban changes much. For the first time he is successful and wealthy. He feels as if he has no problems, mainly because he does not have a family to weigh him down.

Trueba's move to Three Marias seems to appease his hunger temporarily, before his monstrous, demanding, and ever growing needs overwhelms him. The type of lifestyle achieved by Esteban Trueba in Three Marias far surpassed that of living with his mother and sister, however only brief moments of satisfaction are incurred. These, previously mentioned, moments created a hunger for perfection and greed that would continue perpetuate at any cost. Receiving a letter from Ferula brings back memories for Esteban of his sad life with her and his mother, which forces him to endure his memories of poverty and pain. He even remembers the smell of medicince, which had encompassed their home. These memories force Esteban to reflect on the reasons why he left them. He reminisces on that portion of his life, occupied by the deterioration of his family. Ferula endured many burdens as well, due to their father's drinking, then his death, their mother's age, her chronic sicknesses, and Esteban's childhood care. A direct result of these chaotic years is the siblings inability to relate. When Esteban bought a luxury, an elaborate coffee with his money she scolded him for "spending Mama's medicine money on [his] private little whims" (Allende 43). Eventually Esteban tires of this oppressive way of life and goes to search for a "destiny that was bright, free, and full of promise" (Allende 44).

At Tres Marias he hopes to find his Eden. All this cargo from his past is called to his attention by the letter he receives from Ferula. The letter does result in inflicting guilt on Esteban, for his lack of morals and complete selfishness. Ferula tells Esteban, in the letter, that their mother wants to see her son again before she dies. "Esteban had never really loved his mother or felt at ease in her presence," but he knew that resisting this visit to pay his last respects would be unethical (Allende 71).
Get Access