An author's view of human behavior is often reflected in their works. The short stories, The Standard of Living by Dorothy Parker and The Lesson by Toni Cade Bambara are both examples of works that demonstrate their author's view of lifestyles from the past.
Parker's The Standard of Living reflects pretence and make-believe. Perhaps the best example of this is demonstrated by the main characters Annabel and Midge who are two young middle-class "working women" that make a game out of pretending to be rich; what-would-you-do-if-you-had-a-million dollars? (para 6)
In the story, Annabel created a new set of rules for the game that had narrowed it and made it stricter with the condition that you must spend every nickel of the money on yourself. Annabel and Midge had the same style; they looked alike in the shape of their bodies, their movements, their style and their adornments. They did all that young office workers are besought not to do.
They painted their lips and nails, darkened their lashes and lightened their hair. They wore thin, bright dresses that were tight over their breasts and high on their legs with tilted slippers that were fancifully strapped. These two appeared conspicuous and cheap but charming (para 4). The two attempted to portray the "rich and famous." Let's consider their lunch, sugar, starches, oils and butter-fats... sandwiches of spongy new white bread greased with butter and mayonnaise... thick wedges of cake lying wet beneath ice cream and whipped cream and melted chocolate gritty with nuts...patties, sweating beads of inferior oil, containing bits of bland meat bogged in pale, stiffening sauce; they ate pastries, limber under rigid icing, filled with an indeterminate yellow sweet stuff, not still solid, not yet liquid, like salve that had been left in the sun.
In some ways The...