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Short Story Comparison Essay Essay

After reading “The Scarlet Ibis” by James Hurst and “Raymond’s Run” by Toni Cade Bambara, there are some similarities and differences that stood out. Both stories include disabled brothers. Also, both stories include characters that act out of pride. The stories have different settings and have characters with different motives. The main lesson of this essay is not to let pride take over your character.

There are a few similarities the two stories share. First, both stories involve a character with disabilities. In “The Scarlet Ibis” Doodle’s disabilities are described, “The doctor said he mustn’t get to excited, too hot, too cold, or too tired and that he must always be treated gently. A long list of don’ts went with him…” In “Raymond’s Run” Squeaky describes Raymond, “But as any fool can see he’s much bigger and he’s older too. But a lot of people call him my little brother cause he needs looking after cause he’s not quite right.” These two quotes show a similarity in the two stories by explaining the disabilities with each character, Doodle and Raymond. Another similarity the two stories share has to do with pride. In both stories, the main character’s actions are derived from pride.

In “Raymond’s Run” Squeaky explains, “There is no track meet that I don’t win the first place medal…The big kids call me mercury cause I’m the swiftest thing in the neighborhood…In the first place, no one can beat me and that’s all there is to it.” In “The scarlet Ibis” the narrator explains, “When doodle was five years old, I was embarrassed at having a brother of that age who couldn’t walk, so I set out to teach him…I did not know then that pride is a wonderful, terrible thing, a seed that bears two vines, life and death.” These two quotes show us a similarity because they explain how both characters act and feel they way they do because of pride. As you can see, there are some similarities the two stories share.

In addition to similarities, the stories are also different. First, the settings are different and have different affects on the stories. In “The Scarlet Ibis”, the setting is more country-like; “…Someone to perch with at the top fork of the great pine behind the barn where across the fields and swamps where you can see the sea.” In contrast, “Raymond’s Run” has a setting in the city; “I’m standing on the corner admiring the weather and about to take a stroll down Broadway so I can practice my breathing exercises, and I’ve got Raymond walking on the inside close to the buildings…” These two quotes show a difference in the stories by explaining how different the settings are. Since there are different settings, each setting has its own tone and affects the way we feel about the stories and pride. Next, there is a difference in the way the two stories represent pride.

In “Raymond’s Run” Squeaky is often kind to Raymond, and helps him for his sake. In the selection Squeaky explains, “All I have to do in my life is mind my brother Raymond, which is enough…But a lot of people call him my little brother cause he needs looking after cause he’s not quite right,” In “The Scarlet Ibis” the narrator explains why he helps his brother; “When Doodle was five years old, I was embarrassed at having a brother of that age who couldn’t walk, so I set out to teach him.” These two quotes exemplify a difference because they explain why each character acts the way they do. It explains that Squeaky helps Raymond because he needs it and explains that the narrator only helps Doodle for his own pride. In conclusion, there are a few ideas that separate the two short stories.

After reading these two stories, I learned a very important life lesson. This lesson was not to let your own pride take over your character. Although there were different ways of showing it, the lesson was one that every human should try to live up to.

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