Arm Wrestling With My Father Analysis

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Many people are influenced into finding their own identity. Our values, morals, and beliefs are followed by our life choices we make in becoming who we are. In the stories, “Arm Wrestling With My Father”, by Brad Manning and “Looking For Work” by Gary Soto share relationships where they are unable to find themselves. In the story “Arm Wrestling With My Father”, Manning reviews his relationship with his father. Also, in “Looking For Work”, by Soto tells a story about a nine-year old Mexican American boy who isn’t interested in his family’s culture. Coming from experience, there are many ways, I, myself can relate to this. In both stories, both authors depict how parents and culture can influence individuals to become who they are.
First, Manning describes a father-son relationship on how they show affection to each other. Manning’s father had a hard time expressing love to him, however, played physical sports to show it. This relationship was more of a physical relationship rather than a sentimental one. They show love for each other by arm wrestling. It starts by his father being the more dominant one, thus Manning has not won. Manning loved losing to his father to show how his father was strong and how he wanted to follow his father’s footsteps. As Manning grew older, he had another match with his father just for fun. In the end, Manning had won and it brought him to the realization of the symbolism behind the arm wrestling. It reminded him how his father was his protector
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