As I Lay Dying

A Southern Twist: Using Themes of Southern Fiction to Enhance "Silver Sparrow" by Tayari Jones College

“Silver Sparrow,” by Tayari Jones, is a story told in the first person by Dana, the narrator, telling a story about her childhood while looking back as an adult. It takes place in Atlanta, Georgia during the 21st century, although specific dates are not known. Dana’s childhood and family life is somewhat rare; her father is a bigamist. Even at a young age, Dana had some understanding of bigamy. Throughout the story, Dana discusses the jealousy she feels for Chaurisse, her sister from her father’s legitimate marriage, even though Dana was born months earlier. Jones’ describes the pivotal interactions between Dana and her parents when they discuss the situation their family experiences. The climax of the story occurs when Dana finds out that she is part of her father’s secret family. Learning this causes Dana to become more jealous of her sister. However, the twist in the story happens when Dana learns why she should not be jealous of her sister. Gwendolyn, Dana’s mother, drives Dana to see Chaurisse and explains that Chaurisse “…was born too early so she has problems” (Jones 983). Gwendolyn tells Dana that Charuisse has no idea she has another sister and that they,...

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