Grace Paley's A Conversation with My Father: Themes of Experience and Occasions Essay

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Thomas Matujza
ENGL 2342
Professor Rizzo
9/22/2014
Short Story Analysis
A Conversation with My Father by Grace Paley

In the short story “A Conversation with My Father,” written by Grace Paley, there are two stories twisted into one. The capital plot is about a visit between a middle­aged woman and her elderly,sick father. During this visit the two of them argue fantasy and give their opinion as regard to tragedy in literature and in real life. The second is a story that the daughter generates for her father at his disposal. She goes on to tell him a story about a woman who, in order to be closer to her addict son, ultimately decides to try out the same drug and becomes an addict herself,to only be abandoned by the son when he rises above his reliance. Emphasizing structure on her relationship with her father, Paley expertly twisted narratives and character liaisons in order to perform the themes of experience and occasions. The dominant conflict between the daughter and father lies within their different and unique life experiences due to their grand generation discontinuity, leaving them with distant views not only in life itself, but also in literature. Young and liberal with herself, she rejects her father’s impulse to hold on to the common and reject change. Good­tempered and clever, she is committed to art as a form of self­expression, whereas her father sees it as an employment

Thomas Matujza
ENGL 2342
Professor Rizzo
9/22/2014
Short Story Analysis something a careful few “do” but ignorant herds of civilization play as “doing” while waiting for something real to come upon them. It is not surprising that tension constructs between the two, when he displays a question for her to tell him a story in the similar form as of his favorite writers from the era of which he lived in. In pre­visioning her story as an imaginable form of therapy for the two of them, he asks that she write a ordinary story with classic characters written by two authors of his living era, de
Maupassant and Chekhov, who were exemplifying Russian writers whose stories often had a tragic ending. In need to content with her father, she attempts to create a story that he would cherish; however, she cannot accomplish his request to direct a plain, tragic story, despite two shots at it. In both versions, she knowingly leaves the story with an open ending, in hope for the given epiphany that entitles the central character to realize the error of her work and flip her life around. When she declines to end the story in a common manner, her father becomes edgy and simply asked, “How long will it be? Tragedy! You too. When will you look it in the face?...you don’t want to recognize it. Tragedy! (Paley,1284). This friction between them will remain

Thomas Matujza
ENGL 2342
Professor Rizzo
9/22/2014
Short Story Analysis undetermined, as she refuses to depict a story her father sees proper, and in return yield the tragicness of his illness.…