How both "Vendetta" and "The School Teacher's Guest" deal with ideas of justice and revenge.

Essay by PeterHearnB, September 2007

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Both stories explore the strong maternal bonds between a mother and son. They are both based strongly on justice, murder and revenge; which places emphasis on the personal and cultural forces in both of the short stories.

The main character in the story “Vendetta” is the Widow Saverini; her emotions are emblazoned across the story “Never fear, never fear, you shall be avenged my son…and pressed her cold lip to the dead lips of her sons.” Not only does this quote show her fear and sadness, but it also shows her passion. This woman is dreadfully alone after the death of her son and her isolation is best shown when you view the in-depth description from the first paragraph as a metaphor of her life, for instance “The barren coast, stripped of all but a scanty covering of grass.” Is representing her life as the coast line and the grass being her vendetta, the only thing that is keeping her together.

Likening “A fissure in the cliff” to an “ immense corridor” is showing how the widows life is closing in on her and like a corridor it will soon be coming to an end. Indeed this shows that the only thing that kept her going after her son died was her vendetta against his murderer. She puts all her effort and focus into this revenge which causes her to do nothing else but think about how revenge can be achieved, this is illustrated in the quote “she knew not a moments rest or peace, but to rack her brains unceasingly.” The widow is soon acting on her own moral codes. Her own morals are obviously accepting of murder and even when it is such a violent murder of the likes she teaches to her dog Semillante. She knows...