What is the theme of "A Long Day in November"?

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The main themes in A Long Day In November are marriage and family. The story centers on marital strife and domestic conflict.

In the story, Sonny fears that his parents' marriage is at risk. Mama and Daddy are at odds with each other, and neither seems willing to compromise.

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The main themes in A Long Day In November are marriage and family. The story centers on marital strife and domestic conflict.

In the story, Sonny fears that his parents' marriage is at risk. Mama and Daddy are at odds with each other, and neither seems willing to compromise.

As a child, Sonny can do little to solve his parent's marital problems. Meanwhile, Grandma adds fuel to the fire when she encourages Mama to leave Daddy for an old boyfriend, Freddy Jackson. In all the hubbub, everyone forgets about Sonny. He is left to work on his homework alone and is humiliated when he fails to recite his lessons properly in class.

Freddy Jackson, Mama, Daddy, and Grandma are engaged in a battle of the wills. In this battle, the stakes are high, and this prompts Daddy to consult Madame Touissant, a soothsayer of sorts. To pay for Madame Touissant's services, Daddy has to borrow money from Charlie, a fellow sugar cane worker.

In the end, Madame Touissant gives Daddy her best advice for saving Mama from Freddy Jackson's greedy clutches: he must burn his beloved car, the one he is always working on. Daddy, of course, is appalled. However, he does it, prompting bewildered surprise from his mother-in-law.

The story ends with Sonny listening to his parents' familiar voices in their bedroom. Here, marital conflict and the resulting domestic discord is resolved after Daddy follows Madame Touissant's advice.

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The theme of the story has to do with  a father's responsibility to his family. This story focuses on the struggles of an African-American family and what they go through to keep their family together.  It examines the rituals and traditions in the African-American family in the period. The setting is a sugarcane plantation in Louisiana, in the mid-twentieth century. 

"The bleaker, the more difficult life is, the greater the need for rules of behavior. Although Eddie is a good worker and a good man, when he neglects his family—however briefly and unintentionally—he threatens the entire community. The women are preservers and transmitters of tradition and set in motion the series of gestures and countermeasures that make up this folk narrative."

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