The Man Who Was Almost A Man Comparison Essay

1139 Words 5 Pages
When perceiving a man, what comes to mind? Is it a man who is masculine, virile, and aggressive? Or is it a man who is passive, timid, and submissive? Coming across two stories about two men, I find them both similar in various ways. The first story is “The Man Who Was Almost a Man” by Richard Wright. The other story is “Sweat” by Zora Neale Hurston. The common denominators of both stories share a trait of male dominance. With the similarities of the two stories, a man should be strong, respectful, and make logical decisions without using their male dominance as a clutch.
In the story, “Sweat”, there is a guy, named Sykes, who is very disrespectful to his wife, Delia. He is mischievous, malicious, commits adultery, and regards Delia with contempt.
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Almost a man (Wright, 406).” In comparison of the two stories we ask, “Does age define being a man?” Comparing both stories with men in today’s society, age does not dictate a boys’ perception of manhood. According to Gale and Wyatt, authors of “Becoming Men, Becoming-Men?”, the moral of the story was a summarization of how to deal with unexpected and unwelcoming issues within your life and how you deal with these inconveniences that makes you a man (Gale and Wyatt). I do not consider Sykes or Dave men because of the way that they handle situations; these juvenile acts proves that they are not capable of making great decisions. In today’s world, men are very similar to Dave and Sykes. Most of the men get a “big head” when they know they are getting ready to turn 18. Just like Dave, they become rebellious and will not listen to their parents or anyone else because they morph into a “know it all”. For some men in today’s society, age isn’t the issue. The issues, like the ones Sykes possess, are men incapability to respect women and thirst for controlling someone or …show more content…
If the boy was not raised to be strong, respectful, and taught good decision-making skills, then how can he be held accountable for the teachings that were not instilled in his mind? “The struggle between son and father --- between countless teenage boys and their fathers--- for power, authority, and the son’s autonomy to choose his own masculinities from a wider, or different, menu of possibilities than the father’s (Gale and Wyatt). Although a boy was not taught to be a man, he can exert himself to be better than what he has learned. When it comes to Sykes, the foundation of his problems could honestly be him not having that father figure help mold him into a man. In the story of “Sweat”, it does not make it any better that the men in his community do not stand up to him and tell him his wrongs. When it comes to the “The Man Who Was Almost a Man”, Dave had a father figure, who he dare not cross wrong, but his dad do not seem to show him the ropes of being a man. According to John Loftis who wrote (Domestic Prey: Richard Wright’s Parody of the Hunt Tradition in “The Man Who Was Almost a Man”), suggests that Dave has no adult black males to guide him or even to serve as modes that could allow him to define his manhood

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