A Comparison Of Tradition In Mending Wall And The Interlopers By Robert Frost
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What makes us unique? Is it the color of our hair, the way we talk or what we like on our pizza? These characteristics define us, but it is really our choices that set us apart from the crowd. Furthermore, it is our heritage and the traditions brought from our ancestors. The people who raise an individual have unique morals and rituals. Those actions are what later end up defining the person for the rest of their life. Those concepts are actively conveyed through the poem Mending Wall by Robert Frost and the short story The Interlopers by Saki. Each piece of writing tells a story of two feuding families and the ongoing grudges they have with one another. In these families the violent resentment between them has become a tradition with consequences. In Mending Wall, two properties are split with a stone wall. In The Interlopers, two men from feuding families meet to duel to the death and to end the dispute forever. Saki and Robert Frost use devices such as conflict and characterization to convey the message that sometimes society’s morals are cruel and restricting, therefore it is sometimes necessary to break tradition in order to become an individual.
One of the most prominent devices used in each piece of writing is conflict. More specifically, man vs. man. In Mending Wall, the poem tells a story of two men who live on opposite sides of a stone wall dividing their properties. Every winter, the stone wall breaks down. The narrator’s neighbor is very committed to keeping the wall up and the narrator explains his actions as, “But at spring mending time we find them there. I let my neighbor know beyond the hill; And on a day we meet to walk the line and set the wall between us once again. We keep the wall between us once again.” (Frost 11-14) The neighbor is determined to keep the wall there and create a solid form of separation between the two properties. The conflict in this poem relates directly to the short story The Interlopers. In the story, two families have been enemies for decades, fighting over property. When the two heads of the families meet in Ulrich’s forest, the tension is described as, “The two enemies stood glaring at one another for a long silent moment. Each had a rifle in his hand, each had