A Conversation with my Father by Grace Paley Summary

A Conversation with my Father Summary


This story illustrates the difference of opinion and between the old and new generation. They both have firm belief in their knowledge and ideas and they are not ready to change them. The writer represents the young generation and the father represents the old generation.


The writer’s father is a heart patient. He asks the writer to write a simple story like the Russian writers used to write. She writes a story. It is a true story. It is about a woman who is a neighbor of the writer. This woman had a son and they both lived nicely in a small apartment in Manhattan. Her son became a drug addict at the age of fifteen.


She also became a drug addict just to have a close contact with her son. However, for a number of reasons, her son gave up drugs and left the city and his mother. Now the mother was hopeless and alone. The writer went to see her.

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However, her father does not like the story. He raises some objections. He says that she has not written the story according to the Russian writers who could write a plain, ordinary story.


She writes the second version of the story. She changes it completely. Still he does not like the story and raises some more objections. He objects that she does not want to face the reality. He believes that no character can change. If there is any change, it cannot last long.


Therefore, the daughter tries to write a story according to the wishes of her father but fails.


As a result, the functional systems of the body participate in the labor process to a different degree, which leads to the formation of specific structures mental and physical qualities in representatives of various professions. All the specific qualities included in such structures are usually called professional. Moreover, in each structure of qualities (abilities), the leading ones are distinguished – the central links, which play a decisive role in ensuring high performance and achieving professional excellence.

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