Sonny's Blues

Sonny's Blues

  • Submitted By: jaya03
  • Date Submitted: 11/23/2008 8:30 PM
  • Category: English
  • Words: 1111
  • Page: 5
  • Views: 1

The Blues in Sonny’s Blues

Hardships and struggles come along as a part of being human. It is how one deals with these struggles and hardships that can either make or break a person. James Baldwin's “Sonny's Blues” is a story that shows how people can react to the "blues" and how they can handle their own inner turmoil. It is a story that tells of the suffering the characters shared, the ideas that separate them and the music that finally brings them together. Yet the inner story is one of the narrator's evolution from a man living in fear to a man who is finally able to embrace his pain and in this way rise above it. In James Baldwin’s “Sonny’s Blues”, all of the main conflicts and struggles of the story sum up and are given resolutions in a matter of one paragraph (located on page 168 paragraph 3) creating a stylistic centre, summary and solution for the story. These main conflicts include: the internal conflict Sonny’s brother goes through to keep his promise to his mother of watching out for Sonny, Sonny’s struggles (both internal and with substance abuse), and the race-related problems occurring in Harlem at the time the story takes place. In this essay, the importance of this one paragraph’s impact to the entire story will be proven. It contains the resolutions to the main conflicts that accumulate throughout the story and creates a sense of overall hope when the majority of the story is about losing hope and the characters’ downfalls.

In this paragraph, Sonny’s problems are surely not solved, however it is obvious that he comes to an understanding with himself and is heading to the better place in his life. Sonny, the central character in this story, struggles not only with a deadly addiction with substance abuse, but also an inner struggle self doubt not only due to a likely case of clinical depression, but his brother's criticism over his career choice certainly doesn't aid matters....

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