This Way To The Gas versus On My First Son Essay

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The short story, “This Way To The Gas, Ladies And Gentlemen” by Tadeusz Borowski and the poem “On My First Son” by Ben Johnson, both deal with death. They are very different types of death and are told in different ways but through some similar approaches, a similar feeling is portrayed to the reader of each. One of the first similarities of the two is that they are both told in the first person as well as being personal accounts. Ben speaks, as himself, about the death of his son and Borowski tells of events at a death camp that he was in during WWII. They both tell their stories through their own voices which adds a lot to the experience of reading. It allows the reader to except just how real the story is. Once the reader accepts…show more content…
The realness and intimacy that the first-person voice gives us makes the reader more able to relate and understand the feelings and ideas being expressed. Both authors also set a mood with their writing to help the reader understand their feelings on the deaths occurring around them. Borowski set a mood that showed the numbness he developed surrounding death through his descriptions of the events occurring at the station. “The whip flies, the woman screams, stumbles, and falls under the feet of the surging crowd. Behind her, a child cries in a thin little voice ‘Mamele!’-a very small girl with black tangled curls.” (Borowski, 115) This quote seems almost as though Borowski is writing a report about the incident. Actions are simply listed. There is no obvious written feeling in it, even though what is being described is horrible. This shows his numbness to sights of horror and death. Johnson uses mood to show his view on death, which is much more sorrowful and passionate. “Farewell, thou child of my right hand, and joy; My sin was too much hope of thee, loved boy.” (Johnson, ln1-2) These lines clearly set a mood of grief. Its expressed through the choice of words, like “Farewell”, and phrases like “too much hope of thee, loved boy”. There is one major difference surrounding death in the two pieces. Both authors have a different outcome on the way they view deaths. Borowski only remains numb to deaths for a small time. By the end,
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