The Thing Around Your Neck Short Story Summary

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In the short stories “The Thing Around Your Neck, written by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie, and Drown, written by Junot Diaz, there are two different characters who are both immigrants, and their lives after coming to America. In Drown, Yunior is a boy in his last year of high school, who sells drugs to younger kids, as a living. His former best friend,Beto left for college, and the story starts with his life without Beto. In TTAYN, the main character,and how he has developed without him. Akunna immigrates to America, where she lives with her uncle,who abuses her, so she moves out, and has to find a job. The thing around Akunna's neck, and the symbolized drowning of Yunior is similar because they both have something to do with moving to America…show more content…
This is similar to Yunior’s situation because Diaz suggests Americans assume he has no hope as an immigrant when he writes .”Well. Sorry, but I ain’t Army material. That’s exactly what I used to think, he said, his ten piggy fingers buried in his carpeted steering wheel. But now I have a car, a gun, and a wife. Can you say thst you have those things? Even one? “(100) The recruiter is attempting to get Yunior to try to join the military because he assumes that Yunior has no other job, or better oppurtunities. This piece of evidence supports the fact that the recruiter saw Yunior as just another immigrant, and thought he would be good for the army. The second way that the symbolism is similar in TTAYN and Drown is that the drowning and choking could be the main characters in the two stories trying to preserve their old cultures, and trying to combine that with the new culter they encountered and adapted to in America. For example, in TTAYN, Akunna’s boyfriend gives her expensive gifts, but to him, they are just gifts, however to her, they could be useful. Adishie writes: “Finally you told him, your voice stretched in irony, that in your life, presents were always useful. The rock for instance eould work if you grind things on it.”(124) In Nigeria, gifts were meant to be useful, whereas in America, gifts can just be gifts, and nothing else. Akunna combines these two ideas by keeping the gifts, and giving them to her aunts, uncles, and cousins back in Nigeria.

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