Analyzing Sonny's Blues Essay

Words: 2126
Pages: 9

Analysis of "Sonny's Blues" "Sonny's Blues" was written in 1957, but carries a vital social message in our society today of people trying to understand one another and find their identity. "Sonny's Blues" not only states dramatically the motive for Baldwin's famous polemics in the cause of Black Freedom, but it also provides an esthetic linking his work, in all literary genres, with the cultures of the Black ghetto (Reilly 56). To truly understand Baldwin's purpose in writing "Sonny's Blues" about finding your identity, we need to analyze the story by using principles: plotline, point of view, character, setting, tone, style, theme, and imagery. After reading "Sonny's Blues", the first thing to analyze is plotline, which is the basis …show more content…
As the story concludes, we see the brothers trying to repair their relationship, threatened still by Sonny's addiction to drugs, which is under control but is still there, and by the narrator's continuing misunderstanding of Sonny's commitment to his music. As the narrator slowly comes closer to understanding Sonny, Sonny invites him to a nightclub in Greenwich Village, where he is able to witness Sonny in his element, playing the music that helps him remain whole and stay sane. Here the narrator finally begins to understand Sonny's struggle and how music helps him endure and perhaps triumph over the addiction. This is an exceptional ending, because two brothers, who have longed to understand each other, finally grasp each other's dreams and passions and clean the slate and start fresh with each other. The next thing to analyze is the characters and the point of view the story is told from. "Sonny's Blues" is narrated in first-person by an unnamed character, Sonny's brother. The narrator is unnamed for a significant reason to keep the reader focused on Sonny and not the narrator. The narrator is an algebra teacher in a high school in Harlem, where he likes things to be structured and have no surprises, much