9th Grade Lit/Comp
October 28, 13
Greif in “Cora Unashamed”
More than one hundred thousand parents every year are forced to face the unthinkable and their worst nightmare. One hundred thousand parents must wake up every morning and face the fact that one of the most important people in their life has died. They now have to realize that there won’t be any more hugs goodnight and there won’t be any more kisses good morning. Coming to the realization that the moments they live for each and every day are gone, is all apart of the grieving process. As a parent, one must figure out how they are going to live their life without the love of their life. In “Cora Unashamed” by Langston Hughes, Cora a black maid in the old south must figure out how she is going to continue her life without the moments she lived for as a parent. Throughout the story, Cora decides that she can’t live her life with her head slumped over and her spirits low, because that isn’t what Josephine would have wanted. Honoring a departed loved one has a huge effect on the way one express their grief, because honoring a departed loved one’s identity brings stronger and more relationships, a sense of closure and comfort which is a crucial element of the grieving process.
Hughes uses a wide verity of action to help the reader understand that Cora acted as Jessie’s mother honor Josephine’s identity and life. Hughes shows how Cora grieved by letting the reader see that Cora cared for the Studevants’ little girl, Jessie, like she was Cora’s daughter when he says “In her heart she had adopted Jessie. In that big and careless household it was always Cora who stood like a calm and sheltering tree for Jessie to come to in her troubles” (Hughes 4). Letting Josephine live through Jessie was Cora’s way of honoring the life and identity Josephine. When Hughes says “…when Jessie has usually failed in some of her subjects (She quite often failed, being such a dull...
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