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Your search returned over 400 essays for "Sonny's Blues"
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Araby and Sonny's Blues as Quest Narratives - The quest narrative is a common method of narration present in almost every adventure story in one form or another. One key characteristic which defines all quest narratives, irrespective of type, is the search for a “Holy Grail” – symbolic of something the protagonist desires. In a quest narrative it is often appropriate to refer to the protagonist as the hero. However, despite the connotations of the word “hero” to a figure who is flawless in both form and disposition, the hero usually does not begin the story as a perfect figure; the hero must undergo a series of trials and tribulations to which the hero emerges as a changed character....   [tags: Araby, Sonny's Blues]
:: 2 Works Cited
1491 words
(4.3 pages)
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The Search of Sonny: Sonny’s Blues - Sonny, the title character of James Baldwin’s short story, “Sonny’s Blues,” is about a young man whom is struggling in life. As a young African American born in Harlem, the burden of being poor, black, and trapped within the confines of his community, he is aware of the limits and obstacles he faces. Baldwin uses the part where Sonny moved away from Harlem, his afterlife from prison, and his love for music to show us that he symbolizes the search for identity significance. After the death of his mother, his only older brother left to the army, and he was forced to live with his brother’s girlfriend, Isabel, their family....   [tags: harlem, james baldwin, sonny blues]
:: 3 Works Cited
580 words
(1.7 pages)
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An Analysis of Baldwin's, Sonny's Blues - An Analysis of Baldwin's, Sonny's Blues Sipiora identifies the critcal issues in Sonny's Blues with the character giving his self-reflections. Sipiora also says that literary characters sometimes perceive or not perceive the relationships or circumstances. We also have to judge characters in how they react to other characters whether they acted in good faith or not in good faith. We have to ask ourselves when we read literature if the character is being objective looking for personal qualities in a character when they come in contact with another character or is the character looking at another character in a judgemental, stereotypical, or preconceived way of thinking....   [tags: Sonny's Blues Essays] 525 words
(1.5 pages)
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Sonny's Blues by James Baldwin - Sonny's Blues by James Baldwin "Sonny's Blues" is a story about two brothers, their past, and how their differences came between them. They were apart for several years while Sonny was in jail, but once he got out they had a chance to mend their pasts. "Sonny's Blues" is a well written story that teaches a lesson that has value in every day life. The tone is melancholy and reminiscent. The brother is remembering the past and reflection on the mistakes he and Sonny made. He is sad over their fallout, Sonny's trouble with drugs, and the death of his daughter....   [tags: Sonny's Blues James Baldwin] 501 words
(1.4 pages)
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Sonny's Blues by James Baldwin - Sonny's Blues by James Baldwin A captivating tale of a relationship between two troubling brothers in Harlem, "Sonny's Blues" is told from the perception of Sonny's brother, whose name is never mentioned. Baldwin's choice of Sonny's brother as a narrator is what makes "Sonny's Blues" significant in terms of illustrating the relationship and emotional complications of Sonny and his brother. The significance of "Sonny's Blues" lies in the way Sonny's brother describes their relationship based on what he observes, hears, and feels, and how he struggles trying to understand Sonny through the course of the story....   [tags: Sonny's Blues James Baldwin] 1217 words
(3.5 pages)
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Sonny's Blues by James Baldwin - There are many things we learn of Sonny and his nameless brother in Sonny's Blues. We learn their mannerisms, hobbies, occupations, and even their addictions. It seems we learn nearly everything about the pair; minus the narrators name, as previously stated. Hearing of their histories and the pains they've under gone, we see how they deal with their pain, which often truly tells character. Sonny's Blues isn't a story of two brothers living in a rough city; one of whom is a talented musician. The story is so much more, it's the point of tossing the main two stereotypes of African-Americans in an urban environment....   [tags: James Baldwin Sonny's Blues] 1007 words
(2.9 pages)
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Analysis of the Short Story: Sonny’s Blues - “Sonny’s Blues” is considered as one of Baldwin’s first short stories. Initially printed in the 1957 Partisan Review, “Sonny’s Blues” revolves around the narrator as he gets to learn who his drug-hooked, piano-playing baby brother, Sonny, really is. Set in Harlem, similar to numerous of Baldwin’s former works; “Sonny’s Blues” is a steady struggle involving light and darkness, disappointment and salvation (Kim 71). The story was incorporated in the short-story anthology “Going to Meet the Man” published in 1965....   [tags: the metamorphosis, baldwin, sonny blues]
:: 3 Works Cited
1636 words
(4.7 pages)
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Themes of Family Happiness Discussed in Daddy, Sonny's Blues and On Going Home - Family plays a key role in all societies and cultures, and happiness is the direct result of the love within a family. The text discussed in the family theme has portrayed examples of both happy and very unhappy families. Three pieces of literature that discuss themes pertaining to the happiness and well-being of a family are Daddy, Sonny’s Blues, and On Going Home. While some of the themes raised in these works such as forgiveness and unconditional love are vital in order for families to be happy, themes involving change and loss are most certainly not necessary in contributing to a family’s happiness....   [tags: Daddy, Sonny's Blues, On Going Home]
:: 3 Works Cited
977 words
(2.8 pages)
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Brothers' Relationship in Baldwin's Sonny's Blues - Brothers' Relationship in Baldwin's Sonny's Blues Sipiora states that, "Characters often perceive (or fail to perceive) the context and implications of the circumstances and relationships they are in. Some characters act in good faith, whereas others do not. As we examine literary personae, it is especially important to judge them in terms of how they react to others" (77) As "Sonny's Blues" opens, the narrator tells of his discovery that his younger brother has been arrested for selling and using heroin....   [tags: Sonny's Blues Essays] 571 words
(1.6 pages)
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Symbolism in James Baldwin's Sonny's Blues - Symbolism in James Baldwin's Sonny's Blues Missing Works Cited Several passages found throughout "Sonny's Blues" indicate that as a whole, the neighborhood of Harlem is in the turmoil of a battle between good and evil. The narrator describes Sonny's close encounters with the evil manifested in drugs and crime, as well as his assertive attempts at distancing himself from the darker side. The streets and communities of Harlem are described as being a harsh environment which claims the lives of many who have struggled against the constant enticement of emotional escape through drugs, and financial escape through crime....   [tags: James Baldwin Sonny's Blues] 1244 words
(3.6 pages)
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An Older Brother's Influence in James Baldwin’s Sonny’s Blues - In James Baldwin’s “Sonny’s Blues,” the unspoken brotherly bond between the narrator and his younger brother Sonny is illustrated through the narrator’s point of view. The two brothers have not spoken in years until the narrator receives a letter from Sonny after his daughter dies. He takes this moment as an important sign from Sonny and feels the need to respond. While both Sonny and the narrator live in separate worlds, all Sonny needs is a brother to care for him while the narrator finds himself in the past eventually learning his role as an older brother....   [tags: Literary Analysis, Sonny's Blues] 1568 words
(4.5 pages)
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Sonny's Heroic Journey in James Baldwin's Sonny's Blues - The theme of "Sonny's Blues" by James Baldwin focuses on whether a person should be conventional in making decisions for their life, or if they should follow their heart and do what is right for them. A person begins with strengths, many of which they lose along the way. At some point along their heroic journey a person may regain their strengths and develop new ones. Each phase of this journey will have an effect on them and others around them. According to his brother, who narrates "Sonny's Blues," Sonny was a bright-eyed young man full of gentleness and privacy....   [tags: Sonny's Blues Essays]
:: 2 Works Cited
2967 words
(8.5 pages)
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James Baldwin's Story Sonny's Blues - James Baldwin's Story Sonny's Blues James Baldwin?s story ?Sonny?s Blues. is a deep and reflexive composition. Baldwin uses the life of two brothers to establish parallelism of personal struggle with society, and at the same time implies a psychological process of one brother leaving his socially ingrained prejudices to understand and accept the other's flaws. The story is narrated by Sonny?s older brother whom remained unnamed the entire story. Sonny's brother is a pragmatic person, a teacher, husband, and father....   [tags: James Baldwin Sonny's Blues Essays]
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1265 words
(3.6 pages)
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Sonny’s Blues and Ray Charles - Everyone has their own definition of the word dream. The meaning of dream to me is being indubitable or passionate about what it is that I would like to do. According to the Merriam-Webster Dictionary, two of the definitions of dream is, “a strong desired goal or purpose,” and “something that fully satisfies a wish.” “Sonny’s Blues” is a story about two brothers who has took their own direction in life, but also trying to find the meaning of their lives. The short story “Sonny’s Blues” and the musician Ray Charles chart the lives of aspiring musicians facing distractions of poverty and family difficulties as they try to reach their impossible dreams....   [tags: Sonny’s Blues Essays, Dreams, Passion]
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1327 words
(3.8 pages)
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Learning to Listen in James Baldwin's Sonny's Blues - Learning to Listen in James Baldwin's Sonny's Blues In James Baldwin's "Sonny's Blues", the verb, to listen, is employed many times in varying contexts. This theme is developed throughout the story as the narrator learns to listen more closely to the aural stimuli (or sounds) which enter his ears. In order to understand the narrator's heightened degree of perception as it unfolds in "Sonny's Blues", it is necessary to begin with a thorough discussion of hearing and listening in general, and then as they relate to the story....   [tags: Sonny's Blues Essays]
:: 1 Works Cited
682 words
(1.9 pages)
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The Inevitability of Suffering in James Baldwin's Sonny's Blues - The Inevitability of Suffering in James Baldwin's Sonny's Blues Everyone likes to feel safe. We try to protect ourselves and those we love, to make them feel safe as well. The idea conveyed about safety in James Baldwin's "Sonny's Blues" is that there is no such thing. The narrator of this story had thought that his brother Sonny was safe. Or at least, that was what he had made himself believe. "I told myself that Sonny was wild, but he wasn't crazy. And he'd always been a good boy, he hadn't ever turned hard or evil or disrespectful, the way kids can, so quick, so quick, especially in Harlem....   [tags: Sonny's Blues Essays]
:: 1 Works Cited
870 words
(2.5 pages)
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Light and Darkness in James Baldwin's Sonny's Blues - Light and Darkness in James Baldwin's Sonny's Blues In James Baldwin's "Sonny's Blues" the symbolic motif of light and darkness illustrates the painful nature of reality the two characters face as well as the power gained through it. The darkness represents the actuality of life on the streets of the community of Harlem, where there is little escape from the reality of drugs and crime. The persistent nature of the streets lures adolescents to use drugs as a means of escaping the darkness of their lives....   [tags: Sonny's Blues Essays]
:: 1 Works Cited
1080 words
(3.1 pages)
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The Presence of Darkness in James Baldwin's Sonny's Blues - The Presence of Darkness in James Baldwin's Sonny's Blues In the story Sonny's Blues the author, James Baldwin, uses the image of darkness quite frequently. He uses it first when the older brother (main character) talks about his younger brother Sonny. He says that when Sonny was younger his face was bright and open. He said that he didn't want to believe that he would ever see his "brother going down, coming to nothing, all that light in his face gone out." Meaning he had gone from good (clean and innocent) to bad ( giving into drugs like so many of the other young people)....   [tags: Sonny's Blues Essays]
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808 words
(2.3 pages)
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The Power of Music in James Baldwin's Sonny's Blues - The Power of Music in James Baldwin's Sonny's Blues At first glance, "Sonny's Blues" seems ambiguous about the relationship between music and drugs. After all, the worlds of jazz and drug addiction are historically intertwined; it could be possible that Sonny's passion for jazz is merely an excuse for his lifestyle and addiction, as the narrator believes for a time. Or perhaps the world that Sonny has entered by becoming involved in jazz is the danger- if he had not encountered jazz he wouldn't have encountered drugs either....   [tags: Sonny's Blues Essays]
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1545 words
(4.4 pages)
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Siblings' Relationship in James Baldwin's Sonny's Blues - Siblings' Relationship in James Baldwin's Sonny's Blues Eminent psychologists have made convincing arguments for the effect birth order has on personality. In addition, laymen can cite innumerable examples of domineering, pragmatic, reliable older siblings contrasting with those fitting the "youngest stereotype" -- irresponsible, spoiled, and selfish. Such character traits often cause lifelong conflict between siblings. In his short story "Sonny's Blues," James Baldwin shows a profound example of such sibling friction....   [tags: Sonny's Blues Essays]
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1606 words
(4.6 pages)
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James Baldwin’s Sonny’s Blues - In the world of Harlem, New York the cruelties of the world become incandescently prominent. James Baldwin’s “Sonny’s Blues” addresses the foreboding power of pain in a world where someone’s coping skills dictate the course of their life. The story depicts a person’s options to ignore pain, create a reason for pain, or accept pain and live within it. Baldwin explains the theme of pervasive pain and parent’s attempt to shield children from it through the characters. Their reaction to pain constructs a motif of pain management....   [tags: Sonny’s Blues Essays]
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1027 words
(2.9 pages)
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Themes in Sonny's Blues by James Baldwin - Themes in Sonny's Blues by James Baldwin After reading the short story "Sonny's Blues" by James Baldwin, I find there are two major themes that Baldwin is trying to convey, suffering and irony. The first theme that he brings out and tries to get the reader to understand is the theme of suffering. The second theme that the author illustrates is the theme of irony. James Baldwin writes about two African-American brothers growing up in Harlem, a black ghetto in New York, during the 1950's. During this time black people were forced to live in a world of prejudice, discrimination, poverty and suppression....   [tags: American Literature Sonny's Blues Baldwin Essays]
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1013 words
(2.9 pages)
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Acceptance in Sonny’s Blues by James Baldwin - We are all part of a society where justice and respect must be followed if we want to have a nice image of ourselves and be accepted by others. In the short story, Sonny’s Blues by James Baldwin, two brothers are struggling to accept each other. Until the brother listened to Sonny and accepted what he wanted to do in life and who he was as an individual, the brother was in the darkness with his brother and himself. Through flashbacks and the characters, we were able to see how their life was before their mother and father died and what actually forced Sonny to take drugs....   [tags: Sonny’s Blues, James Baldwin] 481 words
(1.4 pages)
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Communicating Through Music in Sonny’s Blues by James Baldwin - Historically, strong family relationships have been emphasized by American society. Strong family ties have been significant to maintaining healthy lifestyles and relationships across many cultures, including African American culture. Sonny, the younger brother in James Baldwin’s “Sonny’s Blues”, has suffered from a heroin addiction which caused him to separate from both his parents and his older brother. The essay portrays two brothers who struggle with their difficult Harlem environment, cultural issues, and their emotional detachment from one another....   [tags: Analysis of Sonny’s Blues]
:: 9 Works Cited
2888 words
(8.3 pages)
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Drugs and Musicians in “Sonny’s Blues” by James Baldwin - When first reading “Sonny’s Blues” by James Baldwin, it may initially seem that the relationship between musicians and drugs is synonymous. Public opinion suggests that musicians and drugs go hand and hand. The possibility lies that Sonny’s passion for jazz music is the underlying reason for his drug use, or even the world of jazz music itself brought drugs into Sonny’s life. The last statement is what the narrator believes to be true. However, by delving deeper and examining the theme of music in the story, it is nothing but beneficial for Sonny and the other figures involved....   [tags: Sonny’s Blues, James Baldwin, drugs, music,] 826 words
(2.4 pages)
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The Symbolic Use of Light and Dark in James Baldwin's Sonny's Blues - The Symbolic Use of Light and Dark in James Baldwin's Sonny's Blues In James Baldwin's "Sonny's Blues" a pair of brothers try to make sense of the urban decay that surrounds and fills them. This quest to puzzle out the truth of the shadows within their hearts and on the streets takes on a great importance. Baldwin meets his audience at a halfway mark: Sonny has already fallen into drug use, and is now trying to return to a clean life with his brother's aid. The narrator must first attempt to understand and make peace with his brother's drug use before he can extend his help and heart to him....   [tags: Sonny Blues Essays]
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2223 words
(6.4 pages)
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Suffering and Surviving in James Baldwin's Sonny's Blues - Suffering and Surviving in James Baldwin's Sonny's Blues In "Sonny's Blues" James Baldwin presents an intergenerational portrait of suffering and survival within the sphere of black community and family. The family dynamic in this story strongly impacts how characters respond to their own pain and that of their family members. Examining the central characters, Mama, the older brother, and Sonny, reveals that each assumes or acknowledges another's burden and pain in order to accept his or her own situation within an oppressive society....   [tags: Sonny's Blues Essays James Baldwin Papers]
:: 1 Works Cited
1464 words
(4.2 pages)
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Analysis of Sonny’s Blues by James Baldwin - Analysis of Sonny’s Blues by James Baldwin In the story of “Sonny’s Blues,” by Baldwin, the beginning of the story finds Sonny’s brother on his way to work reading about Sonny’s predicament. Sonny got arrested for “peddling and using heroin.” He didn’t want to believe that his brother was in trouble. While teaching his algebra class he was thinking about the past. He remembered when he first suspected his Sonny of using Heroin. He was always under the impression that Sonny was, “wild, but he wasn’t crazy....   [tags: Sonny Blues James Baldwin] 475 words
(1.4 pages)
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Mending the Relationship of Two Brothers in James Baldwin's Sonny's Blues - Mending the Relationship of Two Brothers in James Baldwin's Sonny's Blues According to Liukkonen, James Baldwin is well known for his "novels on sexual and personal identity, and sharp essays on civil-rights struggle in the United States." "Sonny's Blues" is no exception to this. The story takes place in Harlem, New York in the 1950's and tells of the relationship between two brothers. The older brother, who is the narrator and a participant in the novel, remains unnamed throughout the story. The novel is about the struggles, failures and successes of these two African American brothers growing up in the intercity as a minority....   [tags: Sonny's Blues Essays James Baldwin ]
:: 6 Works Cited
1277 words
(3.6 pages)
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The Representation of Race in Sonny’s Blues by James Baldwin and The Buddha of Suburbia by Hanif Kureishi - The Representation of Race in Sonny’s Blues by James Baldwin and The Buddha of Suburbia by Hanif Kureishi The journey undergone by the narrator (and elder brother) in Sonny’s blues may be short in literary terms but is said to be one of the tenderest and thought provoking pieces in modern fiction. Indirect comparisons between life and music are rich within many of the paragraphs and pages and remain quietly present throughout the duration of the story even when less patent. Jazz as a genre is undeniably unpredictable and often misunderstood....   [tags: Sonny's Blues Baldwin Buddha Suburbia Kureishi] 1521 words
(4.3 pages)
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The Escape Theme in Sonny’s Blues and The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn - Escape in “Sonny’s Blues” by James Baldwin and Huck in The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn by Mark Twain Both the narrator in “Sonny’s Blues” by James Baldwin and Huck in The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn by Mark Twain feel the urge to escape from their reality as a means of attaining happiness and finding their way in life. However, their reasons for escaping are completely different and so are the ways in which they manage to do so. The aim of this essay is, therefore, to discuss the how and why the Narrator in “Sonny’s Blues” and Huck escape....   [tags: Sonny’s Blues The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn] 815 words
(2.3 pages)
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Growth in William Faulkner’s Barn Burning and James Baldwin’s Sonny’s Blues - Growth in William Faulkner’s “Barn Burning” and James Baldwin’s “Sonny’s Blues” The word family evokes an image of trust and a bond of loyalty. In William Faulkner’s “Barn Burning” and James Baldwin’s “Sonny’s Blues”, the main characters in both these stories demonstrate the idea of family loyalty in several ways. While they continue to express the values of family loyalty, the main characters have to overcome several obstacles. Searching for ways to communicate effectively with their families and maintaining their changing identities trap the characters....   [tags: Sonny’s Blues Barn Burning Faulkner Baldwin]
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1819 words
(5.2 pages)
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The Theme of Identity in Sonny's Blues - James Baldwin's short story "Sonny's Blues" highlights the struggle because community involvement and individual identity. Baldwin's "leading theme - the discovery of identity - is nowhere presented more successfully than in the short story 'Sonny's Blues" (Reilly 56). Individuals breeds isolation and even persecution by the collective, dominant community. This conflict is illustrated in three ways. First, the story presents the alienation of Sonny from his brother, the unnamed narrator. Second, Sonny's legal problems suggest that independence can cause the individual to break society's legal conventions....   [tags: Literary Analysis ]
:: 4 Works Cited
1620 words
(4.6 pages)
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The Impact of Family in Sonny's Blues - The narrator in James Baldwin’s short story, “Sonny’s Blues”, at first glance seems to be a static character, trying to forget the past and constantly demeaning his brother’s choices in life. Throughout the story, readers see how the narrator has tried to forget the past. However, his attempt to forget the past soon took a turn. When the narrator’s daughter died, he slowly started to change. As the narrator experiences these changes in his life, he becomes a dynamic character. The story begins with the narrator’s brother, Sonny, being arrested for using heroin....   [tags: James Baldwin's short story] 612 words
(1.7 pages)
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Personal Renewal in Sonny's Blues - Nothing is Impossible Your youngest brother or sister is thousands of miles away from you and their life might be in jeopardy. This knowledge is known because of newspaper articles that discuss your sibling’s difficulty with a strong addiction to life taking drugs such as heroin. Illegal drugs like this have been known to take the lives of millions of people. With these facts put in place, there is a chance that the drug user identified as your brother or sister may lose their sight of a healthy lifestyle and never live up to their full potential....   [tags: James Baldwin] 1305 words
(3.7 pages)
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Sonny's Blues by James Baldwin - While reading “Sonny’s Blues” by James Baldwin theme, symbolism, and motifs were discovered throughout the entire short story. Sonny one of the two main characters, is dealing with a drug addiction and is now following his dreams of becoming a jazz musician. The narrator, whose name was never given, does his best to keep the promise he made his mother years ago, to be his brother’s keeper. James Baldwin, an African American author, grew up in Harlem, New York. Baldwin had no one to share his love for literature with....   [tags: literary analysis] 1547 words
(4.4 pages)
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Sonny's Blues by James Baldwin - “Sonny’s Blues” revolves around the narrator as he learns who his drug-hooked, piano-playing baby brother, Sonny, really is. The author, James Baldwin, paints views on racism, misery and art and suffering in this story. His written canvas portrays a dark and continual scene pertaining to each topic. As the story unfolds, similarities in each generation can be observed. The two African American brothers share a life similar to that of their father and his brother. The father’s brother had a thirst for music, and they both travelled the treacherous road of night clubs, drinking and partying before his brother was hit and killed by a car full of white boys....   [tags: racism, suffering, misery]
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1304 words
(3.7 pages)
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Sonny's Blues - The story “Sonny’s Blues” By James Baldwin is about a jazz musician and his brother in 1950’s Harlem. The story centers on Sonny who uses jazz music as an escape from his depression. James Baldwin captures the art of jazz during this time period. The themes in this short story are perhaps varied, but all of them revolve around some form of suffering. One theme shows how music can promote change and understanding within relationships. A second theme reveals suffering caused by guilt. Yet another theme references the results of suffering brought about by searching for ones’ identity and how that leads to misunderstanding....   [tags: Jazz Music]
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1744 words
(5 pages)
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Biblical and Religious Themes in "Sonny's Blues" - James Baldwin’s short story, “Sonny’s Blues,” is the authors most studied and critically analyzed piece of literature. The majority of these analyses focus on the obvious themes of the book such as jazz music, the unnamed narrator, or the rift that divides Sonny and his brother. Little critique has ever gone into the biblical and religious themes that run throughout the story of “Sonny’s Blues.” Furthermore, it is even more astonishing that there is little critique given Baldwin has such a strong history with the world of Christianity....   [tags: Literary Review]
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1266 words
(3.6 pages)
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Expectations in Sonny's Blues, by James Baldwin - ... Some would call his compassionate heart a curse as Harlem confronts him each day with a veritable storm of misery. After observing a prayer meeting in the street for a few moments, Sonny admits to his brother, “While I was downstairs before, on my way here, listening to that woman sing, it struck me all of a sudden how much suffering she must have had to go through –to sing like that. It’s repulsive to think you have to suffer that much” (Baldwin 41). In fact, this compassionate heart so deeply tortures his soul that he cannot bear to live in Harlem anymore and begins to strain against the fences that impede his horizon....   [tags: book analysis]
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1273 words
(3.6 pages)
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Short Fiction Stories: Sonny's Blues - This is my first time to read “Sonny’s Blues”. I think the reason for this short fiction wrote successful is great in portray the character and story details. The author James Baldwin use great literary elements to depict the story’s develop. I want to analysis the title, plot and flashback use in this short fiction. The first thing we will do to read an article usually read the title. Also, the title may become the reason for us to start read an article. Like me, sometimes I watch a news title which is interested me then I will choose to read it....   [tags: analysis, music, drug use]
:: 1 Works Cited
756 words
(2.2 pages)
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Sonny's Blues by James Baldwin - Sonny's Blues by James Baldwin In James Baldwin's story "Sonny's Blues", "blues" plays a very important part, even the story itself is a "blues", there is a mood of unhappy throughout the whole story. Also, this is a story about being safe and taking risk, and between the meaning of "blues" itself and for the story, we can some relations in terms of this theme. "Blues" is a kind of music that to express a sad mood. It is synonymous with low spirits and depressed emotion. The "blues", both as a state of being and as music, are basic to the structure of the story, and both the narrator and his brother Sonny have had their share....   [tags: Papers] 364 words
(1 pages)
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Poverty in Everyday Use, Sonny's Blues, and The Cathedral - Poverty in Everyday Use, Sonny's Blues, and The Cathedral Works Cited Not Included Comparing ?Everyday Use?, ?Sonny?s Blues. and ?The Cathedral?, one can conclude that they share a common meaning. Although all three stories consider poverty as their theme, each chooses to elaborate it in a different manner. In fact, ?Everyday Use. emphasizes on the state of extreme poverty in which certain people live. On the other hand, ?Sonny?s Blues. contributes to the theme by describing the poverty of spirit of Harlem?s ?inner kids?....   [tags: Papers Everyday Sonny's Cathedral Essays] 874 words
(2.5 pages)
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Sonny's Blues by James Baldwin - "Sonny's Blues" If you were not able to talk to anyone, nor did people want to listen to what you have to say, would that affect you. In the short story, "Sonny's Blues" by James Baldwin, Baldwin writes about two brothers, Sonny and the narrator, who lose communication between one another because Sonny goes to prison. The narrator, having to make a promise to their mother before her death, was to take care and watch over his young brother Sonny no matter what. This turned out not to be the case and the narrator did not pay much attention to his brother's goals as well as doings....   [tags: American Literature] 765 words
(2.2 pages)
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The Light and Darkness of Suffering Depicted in Sonny's Blues - All of humanity suffers at one point or another during the course of their lives. It is in this suffering, this inevitable pain, that one truly experiences life. While suffering unites humankind, it is how we choose to cope with this pain that defines us as individuals. The question becomes do we let suffering consume us, or do we let it define our lives. Through James Baldwin’s story, “Sonny’s Blues”, the manner by which one confronts the light and darkness of suffering determines whether one is consumed by it, or embraces it in order to “survive.” Viewing a collection of these motifs, James Baldwin’s unique perspective on suffering as a crucial component of human development becomes appare...   [tags: term papers, literary analysis, analytical] 2447 words
(7 pages)
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Franz Kafka's The Metamorphosis and James Baldwin's Sonny's Blues - ... Although the reader does not know what Gregor is specifically transformed into, be it a dung beetle or a bed bug, the metaphor of alienation is still there. It is Kafka’s way of showing a sense of extreme isolation. Kafka in the beginning first shows Gregor as a person we can all relate to. As a working class citizen, he is put in a stressful position of supporting his crisis stricken family. But like a great amount of family members who are old enough to take care of themselves, they have a choice in doing so....   [tags: development of an individual's identity]
:: 2 Works Cited
1813 words
(5.2 pages)
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Sonny's Blues by Baldwin - Sonny's Blues by Baldwin In Baldwin's "Sonny's Blues" two brothers try to live out their lives in the ghetto. This is an urban tale that takes place in some part of Harlem. Sonny tries to live his life as he wants but his brother tries to live his life as a provider for his family. They suffer, survive, and learn while trying to live out their life. This story begins when the narrator finds out that his younger brother has been arrested for either using or selling heroin. The narrator's first response is that its Sonny's problem "what the hell can I do" about it (232)....   [tags: Papers] 551 words
(1.6 pages)
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Sonny's Blues - In James Baldwin's, Sonny's Blues, the title itself is symbolic of the blues in the matrix of the African-American culture of music and suffering. To understand the significance of the blues, one must first define the blues, where the blues originated, and how it is related to suffering and how it is communicated in music. The American Heritage Dictionary defines blues as (1) a state of depression or melancholy, and (2) a style of jazz evolved from southern American Negro secular songs. It is also inclusive of pensive reflection and contemplation which is descriptive of Baldwin's writing of Sonny's Blues....   [tags: American Literature] 991 words
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"Sonny's Blues" - The Evolution of a Relationship through Music In "Sonny's Blues", theme, form, and image blend into perfect harmony and rise to a thundering climax. The story, written in 1957 carries a vital social message for us today. It tells of two black brothers' struggle to understand one another. The older brother, a well-off Harlem algebra teacher, is the unnamed narrator. The younger man is Sonny, a jazz pianist who, when the story opens, has just been arrested for peddling and using heroin. In Sonny's Blues, chronological time is upset yet the author, Baldwin, allows everything to come together in the end....   [tags: American Literature] 898 words
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Sonny's Blues - James Baldwin's short story, "Sonny's Blues", tells the tale of two brothers, as they come to an understanding of each other. The use of imagery and figurative language can help the reader grasp a deeper meaning of what the narrator is focusing on. In "Sonny's Blues", the predominant imageries throughout the narrative are the reoccurring contrasting images of light and darkness, symbolizing hope and despair. Children filled with hope, feel that they can engage in any profession they want and are naive to the despair of their lives....   [tags: World Literature] 570 words
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Sonny's Blues - Discuss place and how James Baldwin uses elements of setting to convey Sonny’s Blues’ larger message or theme. Establishing and maintaining a certain identity mostly depends on the setting. The setting allows us to analyze someone at a deeper level. Considering the time, place and the circumstances around under which they respond allows us to explore them and determine their identity. In the short story “Sonny’s Blues”, James Baldwin conveys the message of how one goes about establishing and maintaining their identity on different levels by using elements of setting....   [tags: James Baldwin] 906 words
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Sonny’s Blues, by James Baldwin - Although presenting just a small sample for comparison there are definite points in this story where the lives of Sonny and his brother coincide with that of James Baldwin; the location of the story is from his childhood; the fact that the narrator’s name is never mentioned and the other characters are referred to by their familial position suggests Baldwin’s feelings about his place in his own family; as the oldest child and the only one in the home that didn’t share biological parents. If there were further doubt that a writer draws from their own lives to create their tales, James Baldwin himself states "One writes out of one thing only -- one's own experience." (Baldwin) Sonny’s Blues is...   [tags: Biographical Critique]
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Darkness and Light in Sonny’s Blues, by James Baldwin - In “Sonny’s Blues by James Baldwin”, the theme darkness and light appear throughout the story. The narrator's perspective of the Harlem is rough and shady due to his ability to accept new ideas and gestures. In the opeining introduction, the Narrator introduces darkness by comparing children to darkness by saying “All they really knew were two darknesses, the darkness of their lives, which was now closing in on them, and the darkness of the movies, which had blinded them to that other darkness” (Baldwin, James)....   [tags: jazz music, jail, harlem]
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Communication in Sonny’s Blues by James Baldwin - “Sonny’s Blues” is a well known short story, written by James Baldwin. The main conflict in the story is communication between brothers and finding a way to understand each other. Sonny’s brother, who is the narrator of the story, finds himself comfortable teaching algebra that “suggests his desire for standard procedures and elegant, clear-cut solutions” (Murray 353), while Sonny’s passion is playing jazz. The narrator has a hard time understanding Sonny and believes that Sonny’s interest for music is temporary....   [tags: communication, conflict, music]
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Point of View and Theme in Sonny’s Blues - In James Baldwin’s short story, Sonny’s Blues, he describes a story of pain and prejudice. The theme of suffering makes the readers relate to it. The story is told in the realistic point of view of Sonny’s brother. The setting and time of the story also has great significance to the story. From beginning to end, the story is well developed. The short story is narrated by Sonny’s older brother. He is a school a responsible school teacher, with a family of his own. The story begins by the brother, whose name is unidentified in the story, finding out that his young brother Sonny got arrested for possession and selling drugs, specifically heroin....   [tags: Literary Review] 783 words
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Brotherly Love in Sonny’s Blues by James Baldwin - James Baldwin, author of Sonny’s Blues, was born in Harlem, NY in 1924. During his career as an essayist, he published many novels and short stories. Growing up as an African American, and being “the grandson of a slave” (82) was difficult. On a day to day basis, it was a constant battle with racial discrimination, drugs, and family relationships. One of Baldwin’s literature pieces was Sonny’s Blues in which he describes a specific event that had a great impact on his relationship with his brother, Sonny....   [tags: Death, Family, Incarceration] 1188 words
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“Sonny’s Blues “ - Follow Your Dreams - The story “Sonny’s Blues “is about two brothers that deal with racism. In dealing with their issues they both suffer and survive in their family and community. Their stories are a strong impact on their character and how they deal with their pain. Sonny chooses a more damaging means of racism, such as drug addiction to heroin; although, he does find a better choice music. The older brother, the narrator, James Baldwin, goes to college to become a teacher, and give back to his community in Harlem....   [tags: Literature Review] 918 words
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Analysis of James Baldwin’s Sonny’s Blues - James Baldwin’s Sonny’s Blues tells the story of the narrator and his brother and the hardships that they must endure. As Kahlil Gibran States “Out of suffering have emerged the strangest souls, the most massive characters are seared with scars.” (Gibran). In that very quote the real light is shown as it informs the reader that with suffering comes growth and once the person whomever it may be emerges out of the darkness they may have scars but it has made them stronger. The theme of light and darkness as well as suffering play a vital part in this story....   [tags: Suffering, Father, Son]
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Contrasting Responsibility in Carver's "Fever" and Baldwin's "Sonny's Blues" - What allows a human being to constantly face-up to the responsibilities of life. What makes a mother or father continue to clothe, feed, and pick up their child from school. What makes a person wake up every morning to go to a job he or she hates, come home, and begin the whole process the following morning. Is it "responsibility" that makes a person do what they have to do, or rather is it fearing the consequence. Truthfully, this would depend on the situation. Parents would most likely fulfill their responsibility towards their child or children because of love; but a person who hates his or her job probably continues to do it fearing the consequence of unemployment....   [tags: Comparative Raymond Carver James Baldwin]
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Sonny's Blues: A Beat Is Worth a Thousand Words - In any medium the last words of an author, lyricist or screenwriter are the most powerful of the entire piece. An ending can completely ruin a perfectly good piece if it isn't what it should be. It can also redeem a mostly mediocre piece by being exactly what it should be. Often the best endings are ones that do not end the way the reader wants them to, but end the way the reader knows they should. Baldwin is definitely an author who knows how to end a story. The last four paragraphs of `Sonny's Blues' are written in what some people like to call `pencil' form....   [tags: American Literature] 1087 words
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Comparing the Blues in Hughes' The Blues I'm Playing and Baldwin's Sonny's Blues - The Blues: in Hughes' The Blues I'm Playing and Baldwin's Sonny's Blues In Langston Hughes' The Blues I'm Playing, the blues are the source of Oceola's life and her choices. Langston is trying to illustrate the conflict between life and art. The art in this story is represented in a confined manner, as a disciplined career with a white woman acting as the overseer in the young lady's life. Art to Oceola, with its profit, convenience and privileges offers an array of benefits, but being embodied in Dora Ellsworth, the art seems to drift away from life's vitality....   [tags: Comparison Compare Contrast Essays] 622 words
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Individualism in Robert Frost's The Road Not Taken, Zalman King's In God's Hands and James Baldwin's Sonny's Blues - Individualism in Robert Frost's "The Road Not Taken," Zalman King's "In God's Hands" and James Baldwin's "Sonny's Blues" Every society has certain values and generally accepted ways of living that are considered normal. These principles are what keep societies organized and orderly. Conforming to these principles, however, is not necessarily the road to happiness for every individual. The main character, Shane, in In God’s Hands, Sonny, in Sonny’s Blues, and the speaker in The Road Not Taken, all choose not to live by what is considered normal, or popular, and are able to find happiness by living as individuals....   [tags: Frost Road King Hands Baldwin Blues Essays] 930 words
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Family Relationships: Sonny Blues by James Baldwin and I Stand Here Ironing by Tillie Olsen - In the two texts “Sonny Blues” by James Baldwin and “I Stand Here Ironing” by Tillie Olsen, the authors focus on relationships between family members. The stories are narrated by the brother in “Sonny Blues” and mother “I Stand Here Ironing”, therefore the story are only told through the point of view of the family member. Olsen conveys to readers that the mother does not have control over how her daughter, Emily, is raised and the internal conflict that comes along with mother. However, Baldwin shows a lack of family ties between Sonny’s and his brother....   [tags: family, relationships, emily]
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Illusion in Nathaniel Hawthorne's The Birthmark and Sonny’s Blues by James Baldwin - Illusion can be defined as a distortion of the senses, of reality, and the perception of a dream like world that consumes us. James Baldwin author of the short story “Sonny’s Blues” uses the unique creativity of illusion to therefore draw in his readers. He uses several literary elements including characterization, plot, and setting to express his elaborate use of illusion in this story. Likewise Nathaniel Hawthorne author of the most controversial short story “The Birthmark” also uses illusion to draw attention to an almost magical setting of mystery and morality....   [tags: illusion, theme, literary analysis]
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Light and Dark in the Book Sonny’s Blues by James Baldwin - ... When he was released from prison his brother was there to meet him. He finds his reemergence into the world through his love for music. For Sonny, music is his guiding light. From the beginning, the narrator introduces the imagery of light and dark that will come to be the dominating theme of the story. In the first scene, the narrator is contemplating Sonny's fate in the dark subway. The "swinging lights of the subway car" allow him to read about Sonny's arrest, while the "darkness roared outside" (91)....   [tags: positive, struggle, drug, character]
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Blame Society! - Swami Nirmalananda, a disciple of the Indian mystic Ramakrishna, once said “Our modern society is engaged in polishing and decorating the cage in which man is kept imprisoned.” Society is seen as a cage by many because the cultural beliefs that make up the society are what guide the actions and behaviors of those within. Sometimes the culture in societies result in helping people develop successfully and positively, but this is not always the case. In fact, numerous societies during the mid-twentieth century that were challenged by racism were marked by rage (Banks)....   [tags: Sociology, Society, Sonny's Blues] 1426 words
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Brotherly Love in Sonny’s Blues by James Baldwin and Tobias Wolff´s The Rich Brother - "The complexity of " In both "Sonny’s Blues" and "The Rich Brother", one of the two brothers encounters success through his life whereas the younger one does not follow the same path and constantly disappoints the other. Pete and Sonny’s brother unconditionally love their own brothers for numerous different reasons and they feel an obligation to the other. They believe that it is their duty to take care of Donald and Sonny, but at the same time they cannot or at least in the beginning understand what drives their brothers in life and moreover the reasons that push them to make the choices they are constantly making....   [tags: Family, Obligation]
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The Use of Stylistic Devices in James Baldwin’s Sonny’s Blues and Raymond Carver’s Cathedral - James Baldwin’s ‘Sonny’s Blues’ and Raymond Carver’s ‘Cathedral’ are two stories which bring out several similarities concerning thematic issues and use of various stylistic devices. Studying the two stories closely enhances the reader to gain essential understanding on the issues being raised such as internal and external conflicts affecting the characters. Although the plots of the two stories are different, their development in terms of characterization, style and themes is more or less the same as there are noticeable similarities....   [tags: narrator, flashbacks, misconceptions ]
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The Power of Music in Franz Kafka’s The Metamorphosis and James Baldwin’s Sonny’s Blues - Music has the power to affect people in great ways. It can heal broken hearts, provide and escape from reality, and speak where words cannot. Both The Metamorphosis and “Sonny’s Blues” uses music to help the main character in life. In these pieces of work, music connects both Gregor and Sonny back to humanity and open windows that were previously closed. Gregor, the main character of The Metamorphosis, not only woke up realizing that he wasn’t human, but also connected back to humanity through the sound of music....   [tags: music, help, humanity, power, souls] 516 words
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Racial Injustice in A Raisin in the Sun, by Lorraine Hansberry and Sonny’s Blues, by James Baldwin - ... Life in the black segregated neighborhood was filled with poverty, danger of drugs, and the death was waiting in almost every corner of the street. Though the life could be killed by the external racial force like racist murder case like narrators uncle, there were some other major threats like the danger of drugs and poverty which made the life in the segregated black community miserable. There when the darkness fell, the evil rose and the danger were waiting for human flash like hungry tiger....   [tags: sociological and story analysis]
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Suffering and Struggle in Sonny´s Blues by James Baldwin - THE DEMON BLACK The transition of being a black man in a time just after slavery was a hard one. A black man had to prove himself at the same time had to come to terms with the fact that he would never amount to much in a white dominated country. Some young black men did actually make it but it was a long and bitter road. Most young men fell into the same trappings as the narrator’s brother. Times were hard and most young boys growing up in Harlem were swept off their feet by the onslaught of change....   [tags: essays research papers] 1195 words
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Sibling Influence in The Red Convertible by Louise Erdrich and Sonny’s Blues by James Baldwin - The family unit has always been an integral part of every person’s development. Naturally, the parental figure plays an overwhelming influence in the maturity of the child, but sibling interaction can be just as great. Often sibling rivalry, or alliance, outlines this connection as a person carves a path into social peer groups. This articulation of sibling influence can be understood by examining the short stories “The Red Convertible” by Louise Erdrich and “Sonny’s Blues” by James Baldwin, both accounts of brotherly experience shown through separation and drug abuse....   [tags: essays research papers fc]
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Black, Blues, and Jazz - Society is made up of individuals – individuals with passions, dreams, fears, and regrets. The society where Sonny existed was hell to say the very least. They lived in the shadow of two wars: one where both brothers served for their country and the one that each man must fight from within. Both brothers survived the Second World War but no one knows the outcome of the wars that rage inside. The Second World War caused people grief and suffering but I think that both brothers experienced more pain with their internal conflicts....   [tags: Social Issues, Drug Abuse]
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Sonnys Blues (An Insight) - Baldwin’s “Sonny’s Blues”, set in Harlem in 1957, was largely about the struggles of an ethnic minority and the stagnation they feel, but moreso how two brothers come to understand each other due to their struggles and from years of living their own, very different lives. Baldwin’s constant, detailed, reflections helped me immensely in understanding this story. I feel that they served as a constant reminder of the social context in which this story takes place. It helped to have those incessant reminders because I kept thinking it takes place in recent years, versus the 1950s, before the Civil Rights Movement was in full swing....   [tags: essays research papers] 573 words
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Sonnys blues - “Sonny’s Blues” by James Baldwin relies on music to convey the theme of hardships for both Sonny and his older brother. The relationship between the two siblings is rocky. “I didn't write Sonny or send him anything for a long time.” said the older brother. Jazz is able to bring both of them closer together and have a better understanding of one another. With the older brother appreciating Sonny’s love for jazz it also allows him to the troubles in both their lives. Through Sonny’s music he was able to help his brother’s pain and in return his brother was able to help him....   [tags: essays research papers] 710 words
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Sonnys Blues - Brothers tend to grow apart yet eventually find a way to revive an old beat up relationship. These brothers grew up on the rough streets of Harlem and went their separate ways. Sonny was a drug-addicted musician and his older brother was a high school algebra teacher with a family. The way the two brothers reunite through addiction, memories and strife make their bond seem stronger than ever. Sonny’s Blues, by James Baldwin, is a story about enlightenment through brotherhood when Sonny and his brother go to the club....   [tags: essays research papers] 758 words
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sonnys blues - At its best, James Baldwin's fiction is lyrical, intense, poetic, outrageous, improvisatory, brutal, and transcendent. The first time I read his short story, "Sonny's Blues," I was sitting in one of those massive chain bookstores, drinking coffee and trying to block out the pabulum coming from the Muzak. Imagine my surprise when I suddenly found myself choking back tears. The last three pages of "Sonny's Blues" are as good as it gets: Sonny breaks into a blistering piano solo, finally finding a voice for his repressed pain....   [tags: essays research papers] 722 words
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Blues Genre: Muddy Waters - McKinley “Muddy Waters” Morganfield left Stovalls plantation outside Clarksdale for Chicago in 1943, drawn by the wartime boom in factory jobs. By the late 1940s his electrified rural delta style brought him success as a blues musician with hits such as “I Cant Be Satisfied” (1948). Having signed to Chess records, Waters’ started to enjoy the commercial success that his music allowed him. The audience responded, Marshall Chess recalled to R&B historian Arnold Shaw that “Waters hit the local crowds like Elvis Presley hit the rock n roll scene....   [tags: musicians, delta culture]
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Blues Boy King - Riley B. King better known as B.B. King was born on September 16th 1925 to a family of sharecropping farmers near a small town named Itta Bena in the Mississippi Delta. King's parents Albert and Nora Ella King separated when he was five years old and shortly after his mother moved to Kilmicheal Mississippi where Riley spent most of his time living with is grandmother. By age seven King was now working the field like a grown man. A couple of years later at the age of nine his mother died. King continued to live with his grandmother after his mother had past away....   [tags: Riley B. King B.B. Biography] 1157 words
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Muddy Waters - Blues as an art form gave Blacks a medium to manifest their feelings. Feelings ranging from humorous to silly to depressed. Fortunately for a entire genre of music, the only way for Mckinley Morganfield to express himself was through song. Morganfield better known as Muddy Waters became a legendary blues vocalist /guitarist. When the Blues industry saw commercial success many of its artists also saw rising fame. Muddy Waters enjoyed success in the industry up until and even after his death in 1983....   [tags: Blues Music] 845 words
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