Analysis Of Toni Bambara's The Lesson And Medea

Decent Essays
The general goal of most authors is to seize and maintain the reader’s attention for the purpose of entertainment, but some authors seek to extend past the realm of entertainment. These authors grasp the reader’s attention for the purpose of addressing social and societal problems. Thus, the reader finishes the literary work with a newfound insight or a broadened perspective of the world as a whole. This tactic of social commentary is successfully deployed in Toni Bambara’s The Lesson and Euripedes’ Medea. In these two literary works, both authors address key societal issues of the time periods in which the literary works were written. In Medea, Euripedes addresses the discrepancy between the acceptable behaviors of men and women in ancient Greece. Likewise, Toni Bambara uses the plot of The Lesson to teach the reader a lesson about the economic inequality in the United States of America. Although “The Lesson” was based on life in Harlem throughout the 1960’s and Medea was based on life in ancient Greece, both offerings of social commentary remain applicable even throughout present times. In Medea, Euripedes tells a story of a woman whose husband has recently decided to marry another woman. As any woman would be, Medea is saddened and hurt by her husband Jason’s decision. Unfortunately, Medea’s sadness turns to anger, which drives her ruthless actions throughout the remainder of the story. Medea’s anger causes her to seek revenge against her husband. She ultimately elects
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