Critical Analysis of Sweet Home

Published: 2018-11-22 21:14:06
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Toni Cade Bambara

The author, Toni Cade Bambara is an American. She is a short story writer and a great novelist. Her work is lauded particularly for the insightful portrayal of life as an African-American. Bambara focuses on representing feminist issues and contemporary political issues in her writing. Sweet Town is one work that has gained Bambara critical acclaim. The work focuses on youth and human conditions. It also concentrates on the political aspect and the representation of the culture of African-Americans. Gorilla, My Love accurately depicts a realistic description of young people's lives and also the use of dialect. She has also received lots of praises for incorporating experimental techniques including change and community examination. By assessing Bambara's oeuvre, it is clear that commentators can link her dedication to social activism and political to her portraits of African Americans (Bambara, Toni Cade).

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Gorilla, My Love is Toni Cade's original masterpiece. The stories got authored from 1959 to 1970. As a result of this famous piece of work, Toni got her name when she was trying to capture the form of language that the people around her that she knew were living in and moved around with. She conceived this work as an anthology of voices. These voices are those of the young, the bright and tight girls. However, she never desired the work to be packaged as a book for the children. Due to such fact, Toni added some adult material onto the book. One such story, for instance, portrays a black woman in the act of seducing a man who is blind in a rally. The children of the woman, however, look at their mother with disapproval. Another one, written in the first person narrative, is "Talkin Bout Sonny". This story has two principal characters, Betty and Delauney. These characters happen to be discussing their friend known as Sonny. They are talking about Sonny's breakdown and him assaulting the wife. One will realize that most stories in Toni's book focus on young girls. What Bambara is determined to do is to try and make a better place for these girls in the world today (Gale, Thomson).

"The Hammer Man" story

One such story is "The Hammer Man", which happens to be talking about a young lady. The girl is timid and hides from an older boy that is mentally disturbed. He humiliates her in public, but the girl attempts to defend him against policemen officers trying to arrest the kid. In this story, both the childhood themes and adult themes completely fuse together. "Sweet Town" has the most evident stylistic experimentation. Within the story, the narrator describes her surrounding in a playful manner. The story also includes several funny moments. One such moment is when the narrator's mother writes a note in the frosting cake. Toni has proved in this story, over and over that she heavily relies on inverted syntax. One such syntax that comes at the end of the story happens to be having several prepositional phrases. It is due to such stylistic factors that make "Sweet Town" to somehow resemble prose poetry (Bambara, Toni Cade).

The preface to Gorilla, My Love is delightful and assures readers that the content of the book is entirely fictional and that no piece of work is autobiographical. However, it is tough for any good reader not to realize that the perspective of the voices populating the book speaks on behalf of Toni. The voices also speak for the neighborhood of Toni's youth (Gale, Thomson).

Work Cited

Bambara, Toni Cade. "Biography In Context - Document". Ic.Galegroup.Com, 2003,

Bambara, Toni Cade. "Literary Fiction By People Of Color - Book Discussions: Discussion: Gorilla, My Love (Showing 1-50 Of 59)". Goodreads.Com, 2010, http://www.goodreads.com/topic/show/445773-discussion-gorilla-my-love.

Gale, Thomson. "Gorilla, My Love - Dictionary Definition Of Gorilla, My Love | Encyclopedia.Com: FREE Online Dictionary." Encyclopedia.Com, 1997,

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