CONTRIBUTING FACTORS AND ITS EFFECTS TO THE SEPERATION OF FAMILIES IN LIVES OF THE SAINTS AND THERE ARE NO ELDERS.
The lack of family structure in Lives of Saints and There Are No Elders have profound consequences in the development and actions of the characters. Lives of the Saints by Ninno Ricci is about the troubled life of seven year old Vittorio Innocente who lived with his mother Cristina and maternal grandfather in the small Italian village of Valle del Sole. Cristina's affair with a "blue-eyed stranger" was the defining event that lead to the loss of Vittorio's childhood and innocence. As the days went by and Cristina began to wear long, loose dresses, Vittorio notices his world change before his eyes. He recounts from his view point all the changes that happened before him; changed relationships, his home acquiring a new kind a silence, and he began to notice and understand the hypocrisy and old age superstitions present in the calmness of Valle del Sole. There are No Elders by Austin Clarke is about West Indians and the complications they face when separated from their native land and culture. Clarke assembles eight short stories each having unique characters and plots that tell about different aspects of the lives of immigrants in Toronto. Most of the stories are recounted in first person by vivid, comical and often grim characters and describe in great detail the ordeals faced they face as they adjusted to a new culture and its people. Both Lives of Saints and There are no Elders tell about the lives of vibrant and animated characters who become or are separated from members of their family due to such reasons as gender, age differences, and financial reasons. .
Generational gap plays a significant role in the separation of family in The lives of the Saints. Following his mother's affair with the "blue-eyed stranger" and the snake bite she got shortly after, Vittorio describes the changes that are manifesting in his home and the relationships between his family and the people of Valle del Sole.