Beloved vs. the Moths: Different Writer's Approaches to Honest Writing College

John Steinbeck believes that all works of what he refers to as “honest” writing, are grounded in themes of empathy. However, being able to understand others is not only indicative of a good story, but also a good author. For example, some of the most iconic writers are those that succeed in making readers connect with characters and understand their actions that they normally otherwise would not. Helena Maria Viramontes attempts to do this through stories based on her own experiences growing up Latina in East L.A. However, the mark of a good author can also be found amongst those who are able to accurately portray certain experiences regardless of whether or not these experiences can be applied to themselves. Toni Morrison is an example of such a writer, as proven by Beloved, a novel praised for being one of the first to accurately capture the experience of a female slave. Both of the aforementioned authors approach empathy in different ways; in “The Moths”, Viramontes attempts to invoke the reader’s empathy for her Latino characters, regardless of whether or not they possess firsthand experience of what being one is like with sensual imagery, detailed descriptions, and the universality of certain experiences and emotions,...

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