The Santa Ana Winds “ The Santa Ana” by Joan Didion and “Brush Fire” by Linda Thomas offer complete separate views to a similar topic, the winds of Southern California. In a first person narration the authors write of the wind from her own experience of living in California and from her own perspective, shedding light on two very different aspects of the Santa Ana winds.
Physically, both pieces of literature are different. Each story reflects its own writer as “The Santa Ana” has lengthy paragraphs, chock full of information. Didion is an American Author known for her literary journalism and use of logos. At a glance of the piece, it lists of reasonings and details is clearly visible. Each paragraph is filled with descriptions and
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The two stories work in comparison in a sense that both authors use similar literary devices to convey their point. Both stories use imagery to convey their different and opposing views. Thomas uses descriptive and mesmerizing phrases like in paragraph two of “Brush Fire” when she describes of chaparral as the “crooked red-brown wood of the manzanita”. She enchants readers of the chaparral’s beauty through delicate and soft words rather than factual information like “The Santa Ana”. In paragraph 8 of “Brush Fire”, she uses imagery and appeals to many senses, painting a picture of a casual day during the winds. Thomas describes the sky “dark with smoke” and the “smell…(of) oders of burning sagebrush” as she gets dressed for the day and goes to work. As she goes to work, in the distance are flames that burn the shrubland, but she ignores them because they are such a routine part during this period of destruction.
In “The Santa Ana”, Didion uses descriptive, short sentences to paint a picture for the reader. She says, “The Pacific turned ominously glossy during a Santa Ana period, and one woke in the night troubled not only by the peacocks screaming in the olive trees but by the eerie absence of surf.” (Didion, pg 2) to describe the atmosphere surrounding the winds. The way she words it combined with the words she uses (e.g. “screaming”, “eerie”, “absence”, “ominously”) create an overall gloomy, ominous tone. Her use of imagery throughout the story