Main Characters in “War” Story by Luigi Pirandello Essay (Critical Writing)
Upon considering the main characters in the short story “War” by Luigi Pirandello, I feel that I identify with the least is the mother of the boy being sent off to war. The most evident example of how I cannot really relate to this character is at the very beginning of the story with the line, “…for the war was taking away from her her only son…” (Pirandello). I am not a father, so I would not really be able to relate to having a child taken away by war, whether because of enlistment or death.
The second example is another evident one being that I am not a woman. A mother’s relationship with her child is one that is different from any other kind of relationship. That child was carried around for nine months inside her body, and she gave that child life essentially. To have something that you nurtured for so long be put in danger must be very emotional. The final example is how the mother could not be satisfied with the thought that her son would be serving his country. I feel that this is a noble cause and would have little qualms about serving my country in war if it did benefit the nation. I would feel proud of it.
By contrast, I can relate to the mother’s statement of “Then…is your son really dead?” (Pirandello) to the other passenger who was saying that his son served the country and the greater good of the nation. If I were a parent, I would probably be able to see more clearly her opinion that sending her only child away to a possible death was cruel to her. Justifying it by saying that he was part of something bigger does not lessen the amount of grief that she would feel as a parent losing a child. I am reminded of the adage that no child should die before their parents. I know if I were a father losing my son to a war, the pain would not be lessened by the thought that he served his country. This is happening every day with the soldiers fighting in Iraq and Afghanistan, so it is not unrealistic to think parents are suffering like this.