Limits or Choices: "Boys and Girls" written by Alice Munro and "Greasy Lake" written by T. Coraghessan Boyle

Essay by piepieCollege, Undergraduate September 2007

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We grow up through a lot of experiences, including good, bad, happy, sad, and others. Such experiences mature our characters. We are affected by various kinds of experiences to be adults. As we know, we have read two stories, “Boys and Girls” written by Alice Munro and “Greasy Lake” written by T. Coraghessan Boyle. The common theme between those two stories is coming of age. Although both main characters in “Boys and Girls” and “Greasy Lake” mature at the end, there is definite difference between two: the girl’s coming of age is the one of limits, and the boys’ coming of age is the one of choices.

The girl in “Boys and Girls” has no choice but to change her mind. Before the girl’s coming of age, she thought, “A girl was not, as I had supposed, simply what I was; it was what I had to become” (Munro 695).

Many children probably think the same as her. They are just what they are. In addition, she acted against what her grandmother said on purpose in the story. She didn’t like to be a girl who adults think of as a girl. Children’s mind can be changed by their environment – such as parents, experiences. After the happening that she opened the shutter to let Flora go, she became a different person. She became more a feminine girl who her mother and grandmother wanted her to be. She made her room ladylike, established like border with her brother, and came to see a heroine who is rescued from danger in her imagination when she tells herself stories in her bed. At the end of this story, her father said, “She’s only a girl,” and she, who heard that, is depicted: “[She] didn’t protest that, even...