The Concept of Family in James Baldwin's 'Sonny's Blues'

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Family is one of the primary concepts in James Baldwin's short story "Sonny's Blues", considering that the connection between the narrator and his brother, Sonny, echoes throughout the text. The writer intended the audience to feel the relationship between the two characters and he initially induced confusion in individuals by hiding the fact that the narrator is Sonny's brother. Most of the story deals with the narrator acknowledging the roles that each of his family members had in shaping his personality and he proceeds to put across his perspective regarding each of them. Baldwin brings forward a story that has a long tradition in the history of mankind, considering that one can associate elements from the biblical account involving Cain and Abel with this text. The narrator experienced a lot of problems throughout his life but managed to emerge victoriously from most of them. Even with this, he needs to support Sonny because this was his mother's dying wish. "The death of the narrator's daughter, Sonny's failure to fit in with his own family, a stint in the navy all serve to alienate the brothers, even after their mother made the narrator promise to keep an eye on young Sonny" (Smith 22). The fact that they were born in a harsh environment, society's views in regard to their racial background, and the fact that they experienced a lot of hardships during their lives all had a severe effect on the personalities of each of the brothers. The narrator's mother plays a key
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