Brazzaville Teen-ager Essay

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Poquette has a bachelor's degree in English and specializes in writing about literature. In the following essay, Poquette investigates and denounces the general assumption that the static endings of stories like Friedman's are pointless.

Many of Friedman's works have a reputation of being silly, absurd, and sometimes pointless. At first glance, "Brazzaville Teen-ager" seems to lack a point as well. Gunther chooses absurd and self-destructive ways of helping his father get well and healing their relationship. In the end, while his father does get better, they remain as distant as ever, and Gunther ends the story frustrated. As Brandy Brown Walker notes in her entry on Friedman for Dictionary of Literary Biography: "The ending. . . . is not a triumphant celebration of how irrational behavior that risks sacrificial self-destruction can result in happiness and fulfillment, but rather anticlimactic and as pointless as the stunts themselves." Although not much has...

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This section contains 1,668 words
(approx. 5 pages at 400 words per page)
Buy the Brazzaville Teen-ager Study Guide
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Brazzaville Teen-ager from Gale. ©2005-2006 Thomson Gale, a part of the Thomson Corporation. All rights reserved.
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