Tuesdays with Morrie
Critical Analysis Essay
In an effort to share the “last class” he had with his college sociology professor, Mitch Album wrote, “Tuesdays with Morrie.” This moving account of the life lessons that Morrie taught him is a beautiful tribute to a man whose compassion and love for humanity made him a favorite among those who knew him. Though stricken with the debilitating disease ALS (Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis) and knowing death was swiftly approaching Morrie continued to help others until his body no longer allowed him to do so. Album uses time sequence, characterization and point of view to chronicle the experiences he had and the lessons he learned while visiting with his friend every Tuesday during that last months of his life. Though Album’s story takes place in 1995, his relationship with Morrie began in 1976. By using time sequence that is nonchronological he is able to successfully acquaint readers with the history of their relationship. Many of the chapters begin with a glimpse back to his college years. The use of this element also gives insight into the life experiences that shaped their character and personality. As a student of Brandeis University in Massachusetts, Album first meets Morrie Schwartz in a sociology class. In that first class he contemplates dropping it because its small size will make it difficult for him to cut. He decides to stay in the class and when he completes it he enrolls in another. At first he does this because the courses are easy and Morrie is a professor who doesn’t put much stock in grades. Quickly though, he becomes fond of his teacher and begins to affectionately call him “Coach.” In one of the earlier flashbacks Morrie responds to this nickname, “All right, I’ll be your coach. And you can be my player. You can play all the lovely parts of life that I am too old for now” (Album 31). Album is drawn in by Morrie’s openness and soon they are meeting outside of class for...
Cited: Album, Mitch. Tuesdays with Morrie. New York, Doubleday 1997.
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