Sample Literature Essays on Bibliography of Arna Bontemps

Arna Bontemps: Bibliography Information

The author of the book, Arna Bontemps, got born in 1992, in Alexandria, Louisiana, and got raised in California. Bontemps is an alumni of Pacific Union College and the University of Chicago, where he graduated with degrees AB degrees. While in New York City, he got himself concerned with the some of the blacks, of the Harlem Renaissance, who had talents in writings. The author, having a heritage of black American, he explored in poems, novels and plays among other literature works of this particular culture. He later made further explosions in anthologies of folklore, narratives related to slavery, short fables and some works in poetry. Apart from writing and editing as a career, Bontemps undertook some teachings, and after that became a librarian at Fisk University for more than twenty years. Some of his academic works include God Sends Sunday, Personals, and a Summer Tragedy among others (Hughes, 27).

Literal Analysis

The story is set in New Orleans close to river Mississippi, during the time of the great economic depression in USA. It talks of Jeff and Jennie, a couple who have lost hopes in life due to the death of their five children within two years. They are sick, full of debts and old. Therefore, they find no reason for having a life (Hughes and Hughes, 38).

Despite all the problems that the couple is facing, they are in deep love, and at times Jennie assists Jeff too, despite her blindness and arching body. The work of fiction gets displayed in the story when we see Jennie dressing up though in her grave ill condition. She emerges the strongest than Jeff and insists as well as being the one leading for the whole journey, and urges Jeff, who is not unwell to accompany her on the trip.

In the story, there are various themes that emerge, and they include themes of hopelessness and desperation, loyalty, love, devotion, commitment and hard work. The theme of hopelessness and despair gets evident by the life full of poverty lived by the couple, full of struggles, and the only available solution is death. The author has showed a lot of love and selflessness that the two have towards one another despite the high poverty, and this gives them the reason to continue living. The author talks of Jeff having worked for more than forty years on the same farm and this shows that indeed he has a lot of commitment and hard work, as well as devotion.

Relationship to the Today’s Society

The litany of some the health conditions illustrated by the author are evident in the daily activities of all clinicians who provide care for those patients who are aging. Jennie’s general health conditions are directly equivalent to the present day’s frailty syndrome. Jeff’s conditions to has a lot of equivalence to some of the sicknesses evident in the today’s society. The love and care seen in the story relate to the current visits and care given to aging patients in hospitals, and they contribute to the healing process (Hawkins and McEntyre, 17).

The story illustrates the relevance and significance of the paying visits, as well as assisting the elderly patients by taking them to and off from clinic visits. In the today’s society, the majority of individuals get faced with some economic problems, thereby living in extreme poverty. The story illustrates the importance of having hope and keeping up with the condition as one tries to find a better alternative other than death.

Personal Evaluation

Arna Bontemps has come out as a prolific American writer in his book “A Summer Tragedy”. His choice of the time as well as the historical setting has gotten more appropriate for the story. Indeed, the period of great economic depression in the USA was a lifetime full of miserable for the Americans. Through this, his has gotten in a position to drive a lot of reality and sense to the mind of the reader. The death of the five children within a span of two years illustrates the hardship the couple may get going through. The choice of events and characters, as well as character traits, has displayed a lot of professionalism.


Some of the languages used by the author are:

  1. “.. Fumbled with his…”- use of hands in a clumsily way.
  2. “…for such vanities after…”- getting futile.
  3. “..An ugly toothless…”- Hideous.
  4. Heah. “..his head bow tie…”- principal.
  5. “…as skinny…”- to get stunted.
  6. “…and gnarled as a…”- getting rough.
  7. “…grotesque piles…”- a distorted figure.
  8. “…A semblance of …”- having similarity
  9. “…hobbled to…”- move awkwardly
  10. “.. said feebly…”- to get faint.