Theme Of A Very Old Man With Enormous Wings

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There are many similarities between “A Very Old Man with Enormous Wings” by Gabriel García Mȧrquez and “The Metamorphosis” by Franz Kafka. Both show many negative aspects of human nature through the use of magic realism, while also demonstrating many valuable lessons. Some of these lessons are help showing up in unforeseen and unrecognized places and how easily humans are distracted by superficial components of life. One message from the two stories is help appearing in unexpected, roundabout ways. In “A Very Old Man with Enormous Wings,” the angel appears seemingly out of nowhere and changes Pelayo and Elisenda’s life for the better. Despite being treated as no more than a pet, he provides them with enough money to build a luxurious house, Each member hides behind a different excuse to avoid doing any work. However, once Gregor was taken away from them, they were given the push they needed to stop making excuses and provide for themselves. Mr. Samsa went from a man who “could not be expected to do much” to a bank messenger, Mrs. Samsa changed from a woman who had no expectations in her life because of her asthma to a successful seamstress, and Grete’s life transformed from days spent “dressing herself nicely, sleeping long, helping in the housekeeping, going out to a few entertainments and above all playing the violin” to devoting herself to be a salesgirl, even spending her evenings practicing her shorthand and French to improve (482). These jobs were not just a way for them to make ends meet, but were “admirable and likely to lead to better things later on” (499-500). In this way, Gregor’s family underwent their own metamorphosis into self-sufficient members of society. This happens often in today’s society. One example is the transition from high school to college. In high school, many teenagers are financially dependent on their family. Once they get to college, they are forced to get a job and provide for themselves, often for the first time. While this may be stressful at first, eventually they realize how to be self “A Very Old Man with Enormous Wings” shows this idea through the towns eagerness to be distracted by the spider woman. Part of this change in focus came due to convenience; it cost less to see her than it did to see the angel. It was also easier to chose seeing the spider over the angel. The spider was open to questions and it was more obvious to identify a lesson from her, while the angel rarely interacted with anyone. It seems there would be much to learn from the angel if the townspeople would be willing to invest the time. An angel would have valuable knowledge and lessons to share if anyone was willing to listen. No one ever tries befriending him, and instead become too caught up in a mob mentality of harassing the angel. Many were also hesitant to visit the angel because of his grungy appearance, not realizing it is not a reflection of his personality. These ideas occur in today’s world as well. People tend to chose the easy path over doing what is right. Peer pressure is a dominant component of this, along with not wanting to be the odd person out. When a group is gossiping about someone, it is so much easier to go along with it than speak up and be subjected to criticism. Humans also are inclined to base their opinion of other based on their physical appearance, not their personality, just like the situation the angel was

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