The issue of who’s at fault between Sonny and his older brother is one that cannot simply be answered by pointing figures. It is hard to blame Sonny for the events that have occurred throughout his life. At the same time it is difficult to put the blame on Sonny’s older brother. He was hurt, confused and afraid that someone who he loved was making decisions that could potentially one day ruin that loved one’s life. Though Sonny’s brother was there to help his brother, whether it was because of his promise to his mother or not, Sonny’s brother never took the time or effort to fully understand Sonny’s addiction or Sonny’s passion for music. Sonny’s brother’s selfish and controlling tendencies towards Sonny and his ongoing pattern of letting …show more content…
Although Sonny found something he loved, other than drugs, he did not seem to care. Sonny voiced his frustration, “But what I don’t seem to be able to make you understand is that it’s the only thing I want to do.” Instead of being compassionate and understanding the older brother’s heartless response was, “It’s time you started thinking about your future.” Sonny’s brother did not care about Sonny’s happiness; all he wanted was for Sonny to do what he wanted him to do so he could fulfill his promise to his mother. These controlling tendencies tied directly into his selfish traits. After Sonny went to jail his brother was nowhere to be found. The older brother recalls, “And I didn’t write Sonny or send him anything for a long time. When I finally did, it was just because my little girl died”. As previously mentioned the path to recovery is one that stems from a healthy and loving support group. The older brother was neither loving nor supportive. Consequently, all Sonny got throughout his recovery was a brother who told him what to do and a brother who put himself before Sonny. Though the older brother’s selfish and controlling characteristics are the major reasons why the older brother is at fault, one could argue that these character flaws root from the taxing habit of holding in emotions. Second, the older brother had a horrific habit of holding
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He hasn’t seen his brother in about a year, but as he is walking out of his school he notices a familiar face and it turns out being one of his brother’s old friend. The old friend spoke to the narrator about how hard Sonny’s struggle is now and how it will still be a struggle later. The narrator went
Overall, this piece shows that encouragement and judgement can have both positive and negative outcomes. The narrator is able to change his attitude on life, about himself and Sonny’s relationship, and most importantly Sonny’s choices by listening to the music his brother played and loved. Accepting Sonny’s blues opened the narrator’s mind to a better life with his brother because he learned that suffering and dread can be transformed to beautiful music and a loving bond between brothers that cannot be
For instance, Sonny has the ability to release his worries and sorrows while he is into his music. He is able to express himself through his music. Music also gives Sonny the will power to escape for his heroin addicted. Sonny and his brother never meet eye to eye because of the fact that Sonny had always wanted to end making a career out of performing jazz. In the article, “Troubled reading: 'Sonny's blues' and empathy,” Kowalska, explores Sonny’s Blue, in depth.
The narrator keeps in mind that he has an obligation to watch his brother but he tore apart by his emotions which are shifting from love to hate. The reason is, he is unable to accept fully that his brother can change as much as he cares about him. Since he was young, Sonny is haunted
James Baldwin's "Sonny's Blues" analyzes a very complex relationship between the narrator and his brother, Sonny. Before directing to the attention of the relationship between these two brothers, we have to first understand the personality of each character. Initially, the narrator has a stable job as a hardworking math teacher and makes an effort to assimilate himself to his surroundings, but has never comprehended his brother, Sonny. Sonny is the complete opposite of the narrator. Sonny separates from his brother to become a Blues musician, though becomes addicted to drugs, such as heroin, in order to control his own feelings.
Although both characters were different they found an understanding by trying to feel what each other were feeling. Also by coping with their tough childhood and feelings together without directly communicating. Sonny wanted so desperately to please his brother, but couldn’t find a way to avoid Jazz but still get that feeling he craved. Sonny was clearly disappointed and embarrassed by his choice of actions and despite what anyone said, he realized the choice he made was poor and it was time to follow his dream. At the end, the narrator realizes why Sonny turned to drugs in the first place.
The narrator and Sonny had a pretty big fight and they did not to see each other for months. The narrator put this in the story to give the readers insight on how Sonny and him fought. This is just some of the textual evidence of anger between the narrator and
After hearing that his younger brother, Sonny, has been put in jail due to drug use, he remembers his childhood, and how they both never did really get along. Both Sonny and the narrator feel a sense of “darkness outside”, and this “darkness” is what creates the miscommunication between the brothers (Baldwin 338). Sonny changed his normality due to not being noticed during his childhood, and the drastic change causes the older brother to feel uncomfortable seeing his brother, because Sonny told him that “he was dead as far as [he] was concerned” (351). Their struggles caused them to lose contact, and to slowly build that invisible barrier between their
Everyone needs rescuing sometime in life? The narrator in “Sonny’s Blues” struggles with his own identity and finding himself. He has a sense of insecurity and conformity to escape his past and from where he comes. The narrator finds himself focusing on his brother’s mistakes in life when in reality; he is questioning his inner insecurities. The narrator believes he must rescue his brother but realizes first he must find rescue himself.
The narrator keeps this in mind and tries to sway Sonny to a path he feels is right for him. Sonny wants to go into music however the narrator feels it would be
For all the characters, Sonny was a son who helped his family and embraced his African heritage; these features were really considered and respected. Contrary to the narrator who melted or tried to melt in the American culture in order to survive, but the turning point occurred when he lost his daughter; so he recognize the pain of the others as well as his brother that he was forgotten during years ago. Besides, thanks to his brother’s music the narrator finds redemption. The evolution of the character’s trait moves from being a selfish person to a suffering man who finally finds peace deep inside himself.
“Sonny’s Blues” is not just about Sonny's decisions and struggles but also about how they affect the narrator. This story is as much about family and brotherhood and the relationship between these two men as it is about the character of
Sonny Blues Paul Pearshall once said “Our most basic instinct is not for survival but for family. Most of us would give our own life for the survival of a family member, yet we lead our daily life too often as if we take our family for granted”. In this story the conflict of responsibility takes place. A brother, who happens to be the narrator, blames his self for the events that takes place in his life, such as his brother sonny’s crack addiction. The Narrator feels responsible for his brother’s heroin addiction because he believed he shut his brother’s career goals down, felt as though he went against what his mother asked him to do, and because he chose not to believe that the way he treated his brother affected his brother life.
James Baldwin is a renowned author best known for his work of essays, books and short stories, particularly those which dwell deeply into important social and psychological issues of discrimination, gender inequality, homophobia and so on. One of Mr. Baldwin 's most appreciated literary works is the short story 'Sonny 's Blues ' which focuses on two brothers who grew up together but take different paths in life. The story follows the narrator learning about his brother Sonny 's incarceration due to the use and selling of drugs until his brother gets parole. Throughout the story, we learn about the relationship between the pair and are able to witness the narrators ultimate understanding of Sonny and his ambition. As we continue to observe the impressive short story, we find the most recurring theme to be that of sorrow.