The purpose of the essay is explicitly stated as the narrative unfolds. Smith says that “family history—told through sometimes hilarious anecdotes, sometimes muddled memories—gave me a sense of pride” (Wyrick, 2017, para. 27). The purpose of the essay is to show how important stories preserved in people’s memory can be and how they can convey information about the events of the past. Moreover, in an undistorted form, they can be a reflection of the truth that shapes the culture of subsequent generations.
In the end, the author clearly articulates the main point of his essay. Smith notes that the version told by Auntie Jean will continue to exist in history. With this statement, the author emphasizes that the truth always remains unchanged, although it can be deliberately hidden. Additionally, in this thesis, Smith asserts the importance and necessity of memory preservation, although he does so in a rather suggestive manner.
The essay is arranged in a logical order and allows the reader not to get confused in the actions since the narrative assumes a mixture of descriptions of current and past events. Thus, Smith first introduces the character, then describes the character, and then moves to the event, and after that to the description of how this event from the past influenced the present. In this case, it is easy for the reader to move from the description of the situation to analyze its consequences, which is logically correct.
The essay author also uses many sensory details to create a more vivid picture in the reader’s imagination. For example, Smith describes the “pink ink my mom had used to write down her teenage thoughts and aspirations” (Wyrick, 2017, para. 24). The author could easily say that she saw the inscription above the title, but such details allow the reader to imagine exactly what the author saw and felt at the moment.
Smith also creates the authentic character of Auntie Jean for the reader. She describes several situations from which one can judge which person the main character is. For example, episodes with big brother and cousins, as well as the statement that Auntie Jean can “send her bacon back three times if it isn’t crispy enough” (Wyrick, 2017, para. 4). All this allows the reader to understand that the character has clear principles and is ready to defend them.
Wyrick, J. (2017). Steps to writing well with additional readings, 2016 MLA update and 2019 APA updates (10th ed.). Cengage Learning.