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What similarities and differences have you found between

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Introduction

What similarities and differences have you found between "The Half Brothers" By Elizabeth Gaskell and "My Oedipus Complex" By Frank O'Connor? These two stories are very different upon first glance. For example one is about a pair of half brothers set in Victorian times and the other is about a small child named Larry who thinks he's a lot wiser then he is. However, if you look deeper you can start to find similarities between the two. They have similar themes, and links can be made between them. A big difference between them is the titles. For example 'The Half Brothers' is a very self evident title but 'My Oedipus Complex' is a little more obscure. 'My Oedipus Complex' is ironic because although Larry does have a strong attachment to his mother it is an exaggeration to call it an Oedipus Complex. The title is almost as if the narrator is mocking himself. 'The Half Brothers' is indeed about two half brothers. Another difference between the titles is that they make they reader react in different ways. For example 'My Oedipus Complex' is an intriguing title whereas 'The Half Brothers' is simple and obvious. The reader would be more drawn towards 'My Oedipus Complex' because the word 'Oedipus' is unknown and the word 'complex' makes the story seem interesting and almost mysterious. ...read more.

Middle

For example William Preston is jealous of Gregory, "he took a positive dislike to Gregory - he was so jealous of the ready love that always gushed out like a spring of fresh water when he came near." This quotation shows the complexity of the character relationships in the story very well by using a simile. In this way the story mirrors real life therefore making it easier for the reader to relate to. The plots of the two stories have both similarities and differences. For example a similarity would be the beginning of the stories because both the narrators have a parent missing, although under different circumstances, however they end differently. The differences in the stories make it more interesting for the reader to compare them. They would obviously have some differences as they were written in different periods by different authors and set in different times. The settings are both similar and different. For example 'The Half Brothers' is set in Cumberland in Victorian times and 'My Oedipus Complex' is set in Ireland just after the First World War. These settings appear to be very different but are set in the countryside, which gives them a similar rustic charm. Both stories have similar elements in their settings. Time is the major difference to the changed setting not location. ...read more.

Conclusion

Whereas in 'My Oedipus Complex' Larry and his father forgive each other and Larry's father "goes out of his way to buy Larry a really nice model railway". This contrast in the ends of the stories shows that a situation can go either way depending on the characters involved. The endings are the most obvious difference in the stories because they define the whole story as either a tragedy or a comedy. The endings make the reader react in different ways. For example the ending of 'The Half Brothers' makes the reader think, because of it's regretful conclusion whereas the ending of 'My Oedipus Complex' doesn't give the reader a lot to ponder on as it is a simple happy ending. This makes the stories suitable for different types of reader. If they want a light-hearted book 'My Oedipus Complex' is more suitable but if they want a book that teaches them a lesson then they should choose 'The Half Brothers'. Overall I preferred 'My Oedipus Complex' to 'The Half Brothers'. This is because it is set more recently and the language is easier to understand, I found it easier to relate to. Also it was humorous. 'The Half Brothers' also had good points such as it made me think and gave me a greater understanding of Victorian language. 'The Half Brothers' is a more educational story whereas 'My Oedipus Complex' is light reading. By Sarah Du Casse ...read more.

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