Sonny's Blues Essay

1021 words - 4 pages

Love is Unconditional ?Sonny?s Blues?, by James Baldwin, is a story about two black brothers who have many differences, but learn how to overcome them and unite as brothers. Baldwin uses many writing techniques that play a huge role in the story. Through plot we learn how important every event in the story is and how critical plot is for the reader to understand.The setting of the story puts us back in a time period and a place were we can visualize each of the events taking place. Finally we see how Baldwin uses the first person point-of-view through a major character in the story to help fill in any hidden information that the reader might have missed. Through every little dilemma and every disagreeing argument we see that no matter what a brother?s love is unconditional.The significance of plot in James Baldwin?s ?Sonny?s Blues? is magnified by the story?s complicating incident, technical climax, and dramatic climax in informing the reader that a brother?s love will always be there. In the beginning, the complicating incident is implied when Sonny gets caught in a raid for using heroin. The narrator shows his love when he refuses to believe that this really happened. In fact he states, ?I had had suspicions, but I didn?t name them, I kept putting them away?(273). This is the same in any family, nobody wants to believe a family member is doing something wrong.Therefore, the narrator tries to put it past himself and move on, but he knows that he has to face the facts.Next, Sonny gets out of jail and is in a cab with the narrator going home. There is some discomfort in this picture. For example the narrator says ?..., it came to me that what we both were seeking through our separate cab windows was that part of ourselves which had been left behind?(278). Later Sonny begins to tell the narrator how he wants to join the army, causing an argument between the two. The narrator replies to this news by telling Sonny ?You must be crazy. You goddamn fool, what the hell do you want to go and join the army for?(285)? At this point the narrator is furious, tells Sonny that he is a fool and that he needs to finish school. Along with this, the death of their mother and a daughter causes a separation to occur between the two.At last Sonny and the narrator come in contact again. Sonny suggests that the narrator should come listen to his music at a local nightclub. The narrator said that he would never fail Sonny again(291), so being a man of his word he agreed to go. Things were a little shaky at first, but the narrator sees this hidden talent(the blues), that Sonny has and it brings the brothers back together. this is a bit ironic because never before did Sonny?s brother ever have an interest for his music. For once the narrator really gets into Sonny?s world and in return Sonny?s brother comes to an...

Find Another Essay On Sonny's Blues

Sonny's Blues - Reaction essay

536 words - 2 pages Sonny's BluesSonny's blues is a short story written by James Baldwin. James was born in 1924 in Harlem in the neighborhoods of New York City. The fact James intermingles his own experience with Harlem into the short story gives this story life. Sonny's brother, whose name is never mentioned, tells the story in first person point-of-view.The narrator begins with the event of his brother getting caught in a raid for using heroin. And for that the

Sonny's Blues by James Baldwin Essay

2043 words - 8 pages 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 Blues by James Baldwin

494 words - 2 pages 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

Sonny's Blues by James Baldwin

1100 words - 4 pages "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

James Baldwin's Story Sonny's Blues

1264 words - 5 pages 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

Sonny's Blues by James Baldwin

1597 words - 6 pages how Sonny and the narrator were able to overcome these miseries and whether they concluded in the same manner in the life of Baldwin. Works Cited Baldwin, James. “Sonny's blues.” Baldwin, James. Going to meet the man. New York: Dial Press, 1965.

Sonny's Heroic Journey in James Baldwin's Sonny's Blues

2958 words - 12 pages 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

Themes in Sonny's Blues by James Baldwin

1060 words - 4 pages 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

The Theme of Identity in Sonny's Blues

1604 words - 6 pages 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

Symbolism in James Baldwin's Sonny's Blues

1244 words - 5 pages 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

Analysis of 'Sonny's Blues' by James Baldwin.

1367 words - 5 pages Sonny's Blues by James Baldwin "Sonny's Blues", a story written by James Baldwin, takes place in Harlem, New York in the 1960's. The authors' purpose wants the reader to realize the experiences that the author experienced. The story is about the past and present lives of two brothers. It is told in first person point of view by Sonny's brother (a teacher), whose name was never mentioned. The teacher comes to terms with his African American roots

Similar Essays

Sonny's Blues Essay

849 words - 3 pages 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

Sonny's Blues Essay

515 words - 2 pages narrator feels threatened by Sonny's liking and desire to play the blues, and tries to influence his life because of his own selfishness. When Sonny is caught for using and selling drugs and is sentenced to Jail, the narrator feels shame but at the same time, he also feels that he betrayed Sonny by not being there for him when he needed him the most.The differences between Sonny and the narrator are further emphasized when they converse about jazz

Sonny's Blues By Baldwin Essay

806 words - 3 pages 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

Sonny's Blues Analysis

862 words - 3 pages Family AffairGenetics is something very interesting. Sometimes when we look to two brothers we can say that they are from the same family because of their similar physical appearance and their resemblance in the way they act. But some other times we see two members of the same family and do not even notice it. This is the case of Sonny and the narrator in "Sonny's Blues" from James Baldwin. In this essay, I will discuss about how these two