Family vs. Family

1526 WordsNov 14, 20127 Pages
Between the two short stories, “Sonny’s Blues” by James Baldwin and “Everyday Use” by Alice Walker, they reveal similarities and differences. Both stories are similar in the importance of family ties and the way they view family, but differ in sibling relations. In “Sonny’s Blues”, the siblings want to recreate their brotherly bond again, but in “Everyday Use” there is no sign of healing the hole between Dee, Maggie, and Mama. First, we will look at the importance of family ties between both stories. In “Everyday Use” the characters have strong connections with family ties and their heritage. “Not ‘Dee,’Wangero Leewanika Kemanjo!” (280). Dee changing her name to Wangero tells the reader that Dee believes by changing her name to a more…show more content…
They was having fun, they just wanted to scare him, the way they do sometimes, you know. But they was drunk. And I guess the boy, being drunk, too, and scared, kind of lost his head. By the time he jumped it was too late.” (264). The mother interprets the position and situation of a black male when she tells us what the fathers attitude is after the death of the his brother, “Till the day he died he weren't sure but that every white man he saw was the man that killed his brother." (264). This exposes to us the suppressed fear and hatred that was hidden inside of the father towards the whites. In the article James Baldwin’s ‘Sonny’s Blues’: Complicated and Simple by Murray, Donald C., he says “His brother responds deeply to Sonny’s music because he knows that he is with his black brothers and is watching his own brother, grinning and “soaking wet.” This further proves that the aspect of family can be seen differently. By looking at it as heritage, the author explains that the narrator of “Sonny’s Blues” is greatly affected by the music Sonny plays because he feels at home now, or “with his black brothers” as he denotes it. One difference between the stories is that in Walker’s “Everyday Use”, the relationship among siblings nearly dominates the story because it is shown is several places. For example, “How long ago was it that the other house
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