The Story of an Eyewitness and Leaving Desire Copare and Contrast

Topics: Hurricane Katrina, English-language films, New Orleans Pages: 2 (467 words) Published: February 8, 2012
The story of an eyewitness” and “Letter from New Orleans: Leaving Desire.” Are both eyewitness accounts of natural disasters, but they are written to achieve different goals.

In the passage, “The story of an eyewitness.” Jack London is called to the scene after a devastating earthquake hits the city of San Francisco. In this passage Jack focuses more on the event at hand than the people. Jack London doesn’t just interview each person one by one but he takes notice of things around him. Jack London wrote “Wednesday night saw the destruction of the very heart of the city. Dynamite was lavishly used, and many of San Francisco proudest structures were crumbled by man himself into ruins, but there was no withstanding the onrush of the flames. Time and again successful stands were made by the fire-fighters, and every time the flames flanked around on either side or came up from the rear, and turned to defeat the hard-won victory.” As people it tells about them as a complete. For instance, in the passage it states “Before the flames, throughout the night, fled tens of thousands of homeless ones. Some were wrapped in blankets. Others carried bundles of bedding and dear household treasures. Sometimes a whole family was harnessed to a carriage or delivery wagon that was weighted down with their possessions. Baby buggies, toy wagons, and go-carts were used as trucks, while every other person was dragging a trunk. Yet everybody was gracious. The most perfect courtesy obtained. Never in all San Francisco's history, were her people as kind and courteous as on this night of terror.”

In the magazine article, “Letter from New Orleans: Leaving Desire” Jon Lee Anderson really tries to express how one victim of Hurricane Katrina was affected by the shocking. Focuses on one victim named Lionel Petrie who had been awaiting the arrival of his family who had left the day before. Until Shawn Alladio had told him that the authorities were not allowing people back...
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