Advice in life: Love and Marriage Essay

2548 Words 11 Pages
Conventional wisdom has it that advice given from the older generation is always helpful. Common sense seems to dictate that since the elderly have lived life longer, they are wiser. Speaking as a voice of the younger generation, although the elderly have lived life longer, the advice they give to the younger generation is not always beneficial. One of the most popular Harlem Renaissance poets Langston Hughes and the idolized novelist Zora Neale Hurston, both wrote pieces revolving around the idea of giving advice on life. Both literary works present characters that in offering advice to the young demonstrate their own distinct personalities. Hurston and Hughes explore the idea of using life experiences to offer advice to the younger …show more content…
In their recent work, the authors have offered very similar views on advice for the younger generation, yet they express a notion that advice given by older generations may not always be valuable.
The authors’ writing styles contain identical elements in their pieces. In “Mother to Son,” Hughes uses a staircase as a metaphor of life. The staircase mother has climbed in her life has been a struggle, and Hughes describes the staircase as not being crystal. With that, he intends to illustrate the difficulties and hardships of Mother’s life. When describing Mother’s life, Hughes writes, “Life for me ain’t been no crystal stair. / It’s had tacks in it, / And splinters, / And boards torn up, / And places with no carpet on the floor -- / Bare. (2-6). This description of the staircase; paints the difficulties Mother has experienced in life. Moreover, a staircase with tacks and splinters harms one when climbing up, meaning when Mother was reaching for a better life, it hurt her at times. By extension this indicates her life was not smooth or ideal. In There Eyes Were Watching God, Hurston also uses the metaphor mule, as women. A mule is a donkey that works the fields and is mindlessly instructed usually by its owner. In using a mule to represent women, the role of women in society is implied to be the work and the one to bear the burden. When Nanny describes to Janie why she must marry a rich man, she says, “ ’So de white man throw down de load and tell de nigger

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