Magical Realism In Portoy's Complaint And Mama Day

797 Words 4 Pages
Portnoy 's Complaint and Mama day are one of the greatest American novels of the twentieth century, focusing on family values and traditions passed from one generation to another generation. Even though written in two completely different styles, magical realism and satire, both novels masterfully illustrate a same central subject, a family unit and its heritage.
Mama day is a perfect example of a work of magical realism. The author created a work which is at once a tale of the supernatural, a love story, a generational saga and a portrait of African-American tradition, a novel in which two major spaces exist: Willow Spring and New York City. Willow Spring is a mysterious place, an island that exists off the coast somewhere between Georgia
…show more content…
While the inhabitants of New York believe in themselves and their own power to create their own destiny, the inhabitants of Willow Spring believe in supernatural forces and in those people who can communicate with forces, who can help or harm humans. One of the magical characters is Mama Day, who knows herbal cures and can summon lightning with her walking stick. She knows the great story of the great, great Mother Sapphira Wade, who in 1823 persuaded her master to deed the island to his slaves “bore him seven sons in just a thousand days, to put a dagger through his kidney and escape the hangman’s noose, laughing in a burst of flames. “(Naylor, p.3) Mama Day knows that her world runs on the magic of belief. Gloria Naylor masters in giving each of these two …show more content…
I’d like to think that Roth wrote the Portnoy’s Complaint as a satire, because of the real American Jew character, in one way endlessly comic and bitterly too. Why Portnoy complaints and what is his problem? Is his religion? Perhaps, Portnoy’s problem with his own religion is because of his family and its constant reminder that he is a Jew and that needs to obey and follow the Jew rules of life. He is overwhelmed by his mother nonstop worries the way his parents describe the “enemy” – the world of the

Related Documents