A summary of sonnys blues by james baldwin

The narrator then explains the suffering he and his wife felt at the death of their daughter, suffering that made him want to write to Sonny at the treatment center and that finally began to make him appreciate the importance of having someone to talk to, a source of comfort in suffering.

Sonny's Blues Summary

She told him the story of how his uncle died he was run over by some drunken white men, possibly deliberatelyhow his father was never the same, and that the narrator has to watch over Sonny.

The man tells the narrator not to worry about Sonny, that maybe he would write to him, but the narrator makes no similar promise.

This passage also makes a strong sociological comment on the limitations that racism places on young black men. When Sonny gets out of jail, the narrator is there for him. The author copes with this task perfectly, as he uses brilliant description techniques, combining both emotions and appearance elements to captivate the reader more and more, making him or her feel closer to the characters and start to understand them better.

For a while, he believed that Sonny had succumbed to the destructive influences of Harlem life. The narrator reads in the newspaper that Sonny was taken into custody in a drug raid.

The narrator asks if he has to feel like that to play.

Sonny's Blues

Remembering his promise, he talks with teenaged Sonny about his future, and Sonny says he wants to be a jazz pianist. All of a sudden the music stops and "Creole and Sonny let out their breath, both soaking wet, and grinning" He thinks that the "man who creates the music.

By "it," we think he means drugs, but also all the things that led him to drugs in the first place. For a better understanding, of all the nuances of their relationships, it is possible to find Sonny blues James Baldwin pdf document for reading the plot.

His uncle, much loved by his father, was killed in a hit-and-run accident by a group of drunken whites who miscalculated in an attempt to frighten the young man. When he comes back for the funeral, he has a talk with Sonny, trying to figure out who he is, because they are so distant from one another.

Sonny quickly cuts him off and says that people should be able to do whatever makes them happy. The narrator also starts to remember their mother, who tried to explain this sense of privacy to the narrator just after their father passed away.

Seeing him that day, the narrator realizes that he suddenly despises this man. Out his living room window, he sees a revival meeting across the street. He was honest about how good it feels to get high when Sonny asked him about it.

His brother feels responsibility for him and wants him to get some education and live further. Out his living room window, he sees a revival meeting across the street.

The narrator cannot protect Sonny from the world any more than his father could protect his own brother. There is a woman singing, which seems to hypnotize them both.

The story opens with a crisis in their relationship. As he prepares to teach his algebra class, the narrator remembers Sonny as a young boy. He pleads with Sonny to stay home and at least finish high school.

Sonny’s Blues Summary

In other words, Creole wants Sonny to stop playing it so safe and to really let himself go. Sonny then begins to talk about his heroin addiction in somewhat ambiguous terms. He has these mixed-up memories about Sunday afternoons when all of the adults from church and their family would sit in the living room and talk about their hard lives.

As the narrator listens to the music, he begins to think about the difference between a musician and his audience. Grace was only two when she died from polio, and the narrator tells us that "she suffered" As he prepares to teach his algebra class, the narrator remembers Sonny as a young boy.

Despite the fact that Sonny almost does not communicate with anyone, we discover that he would like to become a jazz musician and play the piano for people. He blames the music and other musicians for leading Sonny to heroin, and he tells Sonny how angry he is that Sonny seems determined to end his life by being an addict.

The narrator is sort of shell-shocked the whole day as he tries to teach his classes. The narrator sees Creole look at all of the musicians, "as though he were making certain that all his chickens were in the coop, and then he — jumped and struck the fiddle. The narrator tells us that, "The revival was being carried on by three sisters in black, and a brother" Creole is a bass player who leads the band that Sonny plays in at the end of the story.

Sonny's Blues Summary

Heroin is a way to try not to suffer, a way to take control of inner chaos and to find shelter from outer suffering. Baldwin used the following symbols a bit stereotypically, but still they perform their function entirely.

The narrator then thinks back to the last time he saw his mother alive, just before he went off to war most likely fought in Korea.

Seeing him that day, the narrator realizes that he suddenly despises this man. A short summary of James Baldwin's Sonny’s Blues. This free synopsis covers all the crucial plot points of Sonny’s Blues. The narrator arranged for Sonny to live with his wife’s family until Sonny graduated from college.

Sonny reluctantly agreed to do so. He didn’t want to live in the house and spent all his spare time playing the piano. Although Sonny loved the music, the rest of family had a hard time bearing his constant practicing. Baldwin's "Sonny's Blues" takes place in the pre-civil rights era in Harlem, which was and still is a largely African-American part of New York City.

The title of the story is a play on words, "Sonny's Blues" begins in media res. James Baldwin Biography Sonny’s Blues Questions and Answers The Question and Answer section for Sonny’s Blues is a great resource to ask questions, find answers, and discuss the novel.

Free summary and analysis of the events in James Baldwin's Sonny's Blues that won't make you snore. We promise. "Sonny’s Blues" is a short story by James Baldwin that was first published in

A summary of sonnys blues by james baldwin
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SparkNotes: Sonny’s Blues: Plot Overview