Get help from the best in academic writing.

Friendship in Chaim Potok’s The Chosen Potok Chosen Essays

Friendship in The Chosen The Chosen, by Chaim Potok, is a book about friendship between two boys from vastly different religious Jewish backgrounds. Their initial distrust and hatred for each other because of their differing backgrounds gives way to understanding, and develops into a deep friendship. Danny Saunders is brought up in a Chasidic environment. His father is the Rabbi of his synagogue and sect, and is well respected as a great Tzaddik and a Talmud Scholar. His ancestors for the past five generations had been very honorable and respected rabbis in their own synagogues, and Rabbi Saunders son, Danny, is expected to follow in their footsteps. Danny too, is a great Talmud scholar and deeply religious person, but his friendship with a less religious boy draws him into a more secular world, changing many of his viewpoints. Reuven Malter is brought up in a modern orthodox Jewish environment. His father is the rabbi of his synagogue, and a teacher in high school. Reuven is a very modern Jew who learns a wide variety of Jewish subjects. Though he invests much time in Gemara, the amount he learms is nothing compared to what the Chasidim learn. This difference in education and religious attitudes causes friction between the Chasidim and the modern orthodox Jews. The Chasidim believe that the modern orthodox are corrupt in their beliefs- they should be studying the Gemara a lot more, and be much more religious in everything they do, such as praying to G-d. It is not expected to find a modern orthodox boy playing with a Chasidic boy. The two boys were playing a baseball game against each other- the Chasidim, against the modern orthodox Jews. There are obvious feelings of hate between the two teams. Towards the end of the game, Danny hits Reuven in the eye with the ball, sending him to the hospital. For the moment, they become enemies. Danny visits Reuven in the hospital, and they become friends. Danny invites Reuven over to his house to learn some Gemara with his father, and he accepts the offer. They become closer and closer, until eventually they are best friends. Their friendship survives through hard times. When Rabbi Malter makes a pro-Zionist speech which influences the entire world, Rabbi Saunders hates him and all non-Chasidim, because the Chasidim are anti-Zionist. Rabbi Saunders prohibits his son to ever speak to Reuven. After two years, the anti-Zionist movement fails, and Rabbi Saunders allows Danny to speak to Reuven once again. They once again develop an extremely close friendship, realizing how valuable it is. As their relationship grows, Danny is drawn into the secular world, which makes his father very upset. Yet, their friendship still survives and flourishes making Danny happier than any time before, alleviating much of his fathers anger. Chaim Potoks The Chosen demonstrates how two people from totally different backgrounds can befriend each other in such a close friendship. Whether their families approved of their friendship or not, they were still able to maintain a long lasting, and meaningful relationship.

The Importance of Virginity in Chronicle of a Death Foretold

The Importance of Virginity in Chronicle of a Death Foretold

In “Chronicle of a Death Foretold,” the bride-to-be, Angela Vicaro, was returned to her family when her future husband found out that she was not a virgin. The fact that she was not a virgin was enough to prevent a marriage from occurring, bring disgrace to the family, and cause a murder. Obviously, this was extremely important in the novel, and it is of some importance in society today.

When a marriage is going to take place, some men feel that it is important for their future wife to be a virgin. Partly, this is because of an insecurity complex that men may have. If the woman is not a virgin, the man may fear that he will be compared to previous partners of his wife, and he may not live up to the woman’s expectations. If she has been with no one else though, the man can be more confident, since his wife will have no one to compare him to. His wife is pure and untouched, and since he will be the first man she has ever known, the husband can feel secure heading into the marriage.

Besides the jealousy and insecurity factors though, I think many men also want their wife to be a virgin because it is a way of the woman proving that she will be faithful to her husband once they are married. If a woman has been with other men before she is married, a man might see that as meaning

that since she could not wait up to that point, she may be unfaithful to him in the future. But if a woman has remained a virgin up until her wedding, it shows that she was willing to wait for her husband, and is much more likely to remain a faithful wife throughout the rest of her life. By remaining a virgin until marriage, the marriage is made to seem more meaningful for the woman. The husband is then reassured that he is the only one his wife desires to be with.

In the novel, remaining a virgin was such a big deal that the perpetrator, Santiago, was put to death for causing dishonor to Angela and her family. In that society, this matter was taken much more seriously that it is today, since it was a matter of honor, and it was not acceptable for a woman to not be a virgin before she was married.

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published.