How Does Baldwin Use The Cultural Divide In The Man To Send Rain Clouds

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The Cultural Divide Before analyzing another’s actions or decisions it is imperative to understand their ethnic background. The same is true when analyzing pieces of literature that emphasize conflicting cultural beliefs and customs. Sonny’s Blues, written by James Baldwin, gives the reader a glimpse into the hardships of living as an African-American in Harlem during the 1950’s, where drugs and violence ruled the streets. The Man to Send Rain Clouds by Leslie Silko uses visual imagery to illustrate Native American customs on an Indian reservation in New Mexico. While Baldwin and Silko’s stories are different in nature, they both contain similar conflict between cultures. The Man to Send Rain Clouds portrays the cultural divide between …show more content…

He remarks, “Yet it had happened and here I was, talking about algebra to a lot of boys who might, every one of them for all I knew, be popping off needles every time they went to the head. Maybe it did more for them than algebra could.” The narrator remains an example of rejecting what is customary on the streets of Harlem because he refused to dabble with drugs, managed to secure a middle-class job and raise a family. Although the narrator and his brother, Sonny, grew up in the same household, they happened to have conflicting values and goals. The major conflict in this story is between Sonny, who abides by the norms of street culture in Harlem, and the narrator, whose belief system falls within the larger culture. Sonny followed the path of many of the others in the community, experimenting with heroin, drug dealing and pursuing an unrealistic music career, which his brother did not agree with. However, by the end of the story, the narrator sympathizes with Sonny’s drug addiction and understands that his music was a means of channeling his own …show more content…

The Man to Send Rain Clouds is written in third person omniscient point of view, relying mainly on visual description to tell the story. In contrast, Sonny’s Blues is written in first person narrative, relying on dialogue and the narrator’s own insight. Baldwin’s short story is about the narrator’s struggle with accepting his brother, Sonny’s drug addiction and the way he decides to live his life. The narrator fears that his brother will be stuck on the road of addiction and eventually die from his habit. Silko’s story is about a family on an Indian reservation preparing their relative for burial. However, in this tale, they accept and embrace the death of Teofilo because they believe that his death will bring

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