In the essays, "Once More to the Lake" by E. White, and "Arm Wrestling with My Father," by Brad Manning, White and Manning define fatherhood differently, but Brad Manning's definition of fatherhood is the better one for 2015. The definition of fatherhood in, "Once More to the Lake", is a more traditional path and it's the path that many people take whether they want to or they are forced into it. The definition of fatherhood in, "Arm Wrestling with My Father", is a path that generally goes against tradition and the status quo. This path allows someone to make a name for themselves and it allows them to find a place for them in this world. .
In comparison, both essays obviously depict fatherhood. One similarity between the two is that both sons of the fathers are following very closely what they do. However, they are both watching each other's father from different standpoints. In, "Arm Wrestling with My Father", the relationship was more distant. Yes, they both did talk and interact often. But, it's that distant relationship that allowed Manning to become his own man. The approach Manning's father took was to let him learn things on his own rather teach him every little thing he knew and what he could teach him. This approach allowed Manning to give himself a true identity. In, "Once More to the Lake", the approach of White's father was nearly opposite of Manning's. White's father taught him everything as they went along. Unlike Manning and his father, White and his father had more of a close knit relationship. Although teaching him everything he knew, White's father didn't really give him a chance to learn things on his own. This passively created a mirror between White and his father. His father was with him a lot while Manning went away for school and wasn't around his father that much.
An argument can be made that White's father's approach is better than Manning's father's way.