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Marta is about Miguel’s age and has a sharp tongue. Upon learning that Esperanza was once wealthy, Marta begins to taunt her. Esperanza tries to explain that her father was a kind man and Isabel explains that Esperanza lost everything in a fire, but Marta does not stop ridiculing the new arrival. Marta acts as a catalyst in changing the way that Esperanza views her past life. Marta shines light on the harsh reality that even though Papa was a kind, decent man, he was defined by his wealth. Esperanza is both shocked and hurt by Marta’s outrage; she feels that she is not deserving of Marta’s anger because she did not do anything wrong. In her interactions with Marta over the course of the novel, Esperanza learns to develop her own perspective instead of taking all her old beliefs for granted. This brings her closer to Marta.