American Lifestyle

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Readers read short stories, poems, essays, and extended stories in order to comprehend what is and what has been going on in the world. Authors give their personal stories to relate to readers and to express themselves. They write to persuade, inform, entertain, or explain, but the one thing authors have in common: to send a message. Authors like Langston Hughes, Ralph Ellison, Henry Gates Louis, Jr., Alice Walker, Jo Goodwin Parker, and Martin Luther King, Jr. write in order to display an image of Americans lifestyle.

In his short story “Salvation” (1940), Langston Hughes uses narration to describe his experience that caused him to be devastated of being “saved” (203). As a child, an adult would make a child believe in an illusion that will put their hopes up, but when they found out it is not true; they are disappointed. For example, Hughes states: “My aunt told me that when you were saved you saw a light, and something happened to you inside! And Jesus came into your life! And God was with you from then on! She said you could see and hear and feel Jesus in your soul. I believed her… I couldn’t bear to tell her that I had lied, that I deceived everybody in the church, that I hadn’t seen Jesus and that now I didn’t believe there was a Jesus, and that now I didn’t believe there was a Jesus any more, since he didn’t come to help me.” (203-204) It is easy for an adult to make a child believe in an illusion that can possibly devastate the child. In Americans lifestyle, children are told to believe in Santa Claus, Tooth Fairy, Ghosts, and fairytales that are not believe to be true.

By using exemplification in his essay, “On Being the Target of Discrimination” (1989), Ralph Ellison explains his experience when he was being discriminated against. America was known for the time segregation occurred. During that period, African Americans were not able to do many things like voting, going to school with white people, drinking in the same water fountain as whites, and...
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