Comparing Stories

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Carver created a story that has some similarities and mostly differences to the Solomon story (1 Kings, Chapter 3). The people in this story are not wise like King Solomon was. The True mother in the biblical story has different from this mother because it seemed like the “Popular Mechanics” mother wanted the child out of jealousy and less because of love. The couple is struggling over a child that is both their own, while the two women are fighting over a child that is only one of theirs. There was no dead child in “Popular Mechanics” like in the Solomon story, and there was no judgment handed out. Raymond Carver makes a great point with his story “Popular Mechanics”, regarding society and relationships. He points out that the parents are more concerned with the icon of the baby, and less with the baby itself. This story shows how the struggle of the baby began with a simple photo, which metaphorically began the struggle for the actual baby. Couples in our society will do things to each other to hurt and demean them when the relationship isn’t working out. Whether it’s a struggle over a child or a house, things tend to get ugly fast.

Carver shows the dehumanization of the baby by it being an object used to hurt another loved one. The parents continuously refer to the baby as “the baby” or “this baby”, impersonalizing the child from an actual person to a symbol. This symbol of victory is very common in our society and is evident in high divorce rates and statistics that continue to grow. Many divorces end in divided families, people taking sides and sides trying to hurt one another. “The Story of an Hour” and “Popular Mechanics” may have more connections then people may think. She experiences (or thinks she has) a loss and is devastated, just like the couple in Carver’s story. The couple has lost their relationship and are trying to deal with it in their own ways. While Mrs. Mallard deals with her loss by grieving, the couple deals with their lost...
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