A Short Story: Popular Mechanics By Raymond Carver

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1. What is the title of the text and what is the text about?

“Popular Mechanics” is a short story written by Raymond Carver.
The scene took place early in the morning. The date is unknown, however, it would be possible to suggest that this happened somewhere between winter and spring. Indeed, Carver (1981/2014) described that “the snow was melting into dirty water”.
There are three main figures in the story: the father, the mother and the baby.
In the introduction, the father is packing his luggage while the woman is teasing him. She claimed being overjoyed by the fact he is leaving the house. She insulted him and blamed him for not looking at her while packing. In fact we do not know why there are fighting.
Nevertheless, the crisis was
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Indeed, she called him a “son of a bitch” (Carver, 1981/2014). The reader should think that she did not call him “drunk man” or “small genitals”, but chose a word usually qualifying a man having extra-marital adventures. It might have been clearer if this hypothesis would be verified and the woman at fault. Indeed, then, the man could have called her “whore” or any other offensive words referring to that registry and without ambiguity. However, another element added up to enhance this hypothesis. She blamed him for not looking at her. Could it be the feeling of shame? The father is a selfish man, he might have wanted to have another woman while keeping the child and a…show more content…
Have I heard/read anything similar or dissimilar? What was it?

Readers familiar with the Holy Books should have heard of a similar story. King Solomon had to judge a case where two women were claiming that one baby was theirs. Solomon could not know whose child was this. Therefore, he ordered to cut the baby in two. It was a trick imagined by Solomon. One of the woman gave up her motherhood for which she had fought until now, and sadly asked to give the full baby to the other woman. Only the real mother could have loved her child so much for giving up half of the property and sparing his whole life (1 Kings 3:16-28 KJ21)
In “Popular Mechanics”, the problem is that both real parents blind by their fury, gave up the integrity of their baby. Trying to punish each other by keeping the full ownership of this child lead to his death.

7. Do I agree or disagree with the views expressed by the author? Why?

As already previously written, nothing is confirmed by the author. It seems like a typical household accident that happens daily and could be read in any newspaper. However, if my hypothesis are correct, then, I fully agree with the author. These parents were very stupid and
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