Compare and Contrast: Marquez’s “a Very Old Man with Enormous Wings” and Bambara’s “the Lessson”
English and Literature
Submitted By cate23
Although Gabriel Garcia Marquez’s “A very old man with Enormous wings” and Toni Cade Bambara’s “The lesson” are mostly different in their published time and directions, they have only one common feature on effectively using a narrative voice to demonstrate social commentaries.
“Enormous” was related to the period of Colombian history. According to Daniel H. Levine’s book “Religion and Politics in Latin American”, this story has many symbols related to the reality-Religion and Politics in Colombia. For instance, Father Gonzaga is a symbol of the Roman Catholic Church, the villages also symbolize Colombians and the old “angel” represents religion. As we have read from the story, the villagers treated the “angel” cruelly and unfairly through locking him into a chicken coop and the whole neighborhood in front of the chicken coop having fun with him as well. It demonstrates that people may oppose or betray the religious rules and show various views towards religion.
On the other hand, Bambara’s “The lesson” depicts the life of African Americans in Harlem. The protagonist of “The lesson” Sylvia describes the situation of the people outside of the store and the difference of treatments between white and black Americans. The author uses a first-person narrative to disclose the invisible interpersonal gap and distance between different ethnics.
Comparing with Bambara’s perspective of thoughts, Marquez witnesses the events that are focus on external environment. He understood the information about Colombian people and he believed that they would have various reactions and attitudes to their own religion. This allows readers to make decisions about the treatment to religion. They decide their own society finally. Next, Bambara wanted to express the fundamental reality about American ethnical issue. Probably, he was also familiar with “anomie” and he created Sylvia to...