The Bats and The Lifeguard – Comparative Essay

The iconic Harper Lee once said, “You never really understand a person until you consider things from his/her point of view.” In the short stories The Bats and The Lifeguard the reader is subjected to the perspective of the protagonist, which lets the reader consider things from their point of view. Point of view is a great literary technique used by both authors in order to develop the story and their characters. Barbara Scott and Chira Divakarvni use the first person narrative point of view to characterize their protagonist throughout their stories.

In Divakarvni The Bats the migration of a young girl and her mother is told. The two move from an abusive home, where they live with the father who supports them, to the grandfather/uncles house in the country. The change in surroundings proves positive as the abuse of her father is no longer present, and she finds a new friend in her grandpa-uncle. The girl is happy with her new life, but her mother decides they should return to their father. Once they return, the girl is saddened that she lost a friend in her grandpa-uncle, and the abusive tendencies of her father continue. The story ends with a cycle of the mother and daughter leaving the father and then constantly returning without the mother learning that the father will never change.

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In Scott’s “The Lifeguard,” the reader is focused on the story of Chris, an ambitious young man. Chris ambition drives him to stay behind by himself in Vancouver to make the diving team while his mother and younger brother move to B.C. Chris spends most of his time working as a lifeguard and practicing his diving. Throughout the story mark develops a relationship with a young boy mike that has been left orphaned after a car crash. Their relationship allows Chris to learn more about himself while it gives mike a companion to help in his rehabilitation. Chris also deals with the reappearance of his father who left his family five years earlier.C…