Like Father, Like Daughter
Let's face it; there comes a time in life when teenagers cannot stand their parents. Arguments ensue, many things that should never be said are spoken aloud, and the teenagers think that they have nothing in common with their parents. However, when Sarah Vowell shares her experience in the essay “Shooting Dad,” she gives the audience a complete, retrospective look at her teenage feuds, which contrasts her relationship with her father today. Vowell uses her past experiences with her father in order to emphasize the strong bond that they both now have, while acknowledging that even though teenagers may clash with their parents over their beliefs or hobbies, they will still have something, be it mannerisms or interests that connects them to their parents. She begins her essay by introducing the reader to the arguments that she and her father used to have.
Vowell makes her aversion to guns and her father's love of them, as well as their difference in opinions, clear from the beginning of the essay in order to demonstrate how poor she and her father's relationship used to be. In “Shooting Dad,” this difference is clearly defined with Vowell's descriptions of what she calls, “jealously guarded totalitarian states in which each of us [Vowell and her father] declared ourselves dictator” (Vowell, 2). By using this wording, Vowell creates the scenario of war, making the reader question the extent of this feud. Later on, Vowell states after revisiting the memory of shooting a gun, “And, because I believed in the devil, I...whispered under my breath, 'Satan, I rebuke thee'” (Vowell, 4). When Vowell says this, the audience can finally feel the total impact of how different she seems from her father, in that while her father loves guns, she cannot stand them. Vowell also states that some of her fights with her father contained words that would have been better left unsaid (Vowell, 4). This portrays a negative connotation of the relationship that...
Cited: Chicago Public Media. "NRA Vs NEA." Guns | This American Life. WBEZ Chicago, 24 Oct. 1997. Web. 13 Sept. 2013.
Vowell, Sarah. "Shooting Dad." The Brief Bedford Reader. New York: Bedford/St. Martins, 2011. N. pag. Print.
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