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The Back of the Bus’ by Mary Mebane and ‘The Sanctuary School’ by Lynda Barry

It is believed that childhood is one of the happiest moments in the life of any person. They are protected by their parents and do not have fears or worries. Unfortunately, there are many cases when the situation contradicts the given stereotypes, and children might suffer from various issues. Thus, the works The back of the Bus by Mary Mebane and The Sanctuary School by Lynda Barry describe such cases. The first essay depicts the experience of a girl living in a segregated society, her fears, and her emotions. The second text revolves around the feelings of a girl who lives in a problematic family and finds satisfaction in visiting the school and making art. Being different, both these works also have some similar ideas as the authors use the first-person narrative to touch upon the main problems and help readers to understand the central message.

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Mebane’s essay the Back of the Bus introduces the south of the USA during the times of segregation and complicated relations between black and white people. She captures the fear, anxiety, and other strong emotions that affect a young girl who rides a bus through the “white” part of the town (Mebane 73). To make the effect stronger, the author introduces the historical perspective and her own experiences of segregation and discrimination (Mebane 74). The use of this literary element helps to create a specific atmosphere and realize the main source of fears that influence a young girl. Additionally, a simple event, a ride in the bus, becomes associated with multiple issues that come from the complexity of the world and its unfair nature, which is also vital for the understanding of the story.

Barry revolves around different issues as her work is devoted to a girl and how going to school becomes her sanctuary. The author describes the turbulent times she had at home because of a lack of stability and constant fights between parents (Barry 1). The given facts are vital for the recognition of the fact that the ability to leave this place and engage in some other activity in a safe environment was crucial for a person. Barry uses her own voice to depict the feelings of a young girl and share her personal experience, which also becomes a vital factor that makes readers sympathize with the character and understand her better.

Comparing these two stories, it is possible to conclude that they have many similar aspects. Both authors use first-person narration to share their experiences and feelings related to some problematic issues in their past. The use of this literary element helps to make readers involved in the described events and believe in their truthfulness. They also appeal to events in their childhood that preconditioned the creation of these works and their central messages. At the same time, the major difference is in the topics covered by Barry and Mebane and the ways they cogitate about their feelings and negative emotions.

Altogether, comparing The back of the Bus by Mary Mebane and The Sanctuary School by Lynda Barry, it is possible to conclude that the works have much in common. They represent the experiences of young girls who have to overcome negative emotions and fears that affect them at the moment and find happiness in some other things. The use of literary elements such as the first-person narration, and references to past times, contributes to the creation of a specific atmosphere vital for the improved understanding of the central ideas.

Works Cited

Barry, Lynda. “The Sanctuary of School.” Englishiva.

Mebane, Marry. “The Back of the Bus.” FairFieldPrep.

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StudyCorgi. "The Back of the Bus’ by Mary Mebane and ‘The Sanctuary School’ by Lynda Barry." March 21, 2022. https://studycorgi.com/the-back-of-the-bus-by-mary-mebane-and-the-sanctuary-school-by-lynda-barry/.

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StudyCorgi. 2022. "The Back of the Bus’ by Mary Mebane and ‘The Sanctuary School’ by Lynda Barry." March 21, 2022. https://studycorgi.com/the-back-of-the-bus-by-mary-mebane-and-the-sanctuary-school-by-lynda-barry/.

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StudyCorgi. (2022) 'The Back of the Bus’ by Mary Mebane and ‘The Sanctuary School’ by Lynda Barry'. 21 March.

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