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Relationships In Bernard Malmud's The Natural

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Good ole’ boy, Roy Hobbs struggles with relationships in The Natural by Bernard Malmud. Roy encounters three tantalizing women that play major roles in his life, Harriet Bird, Memo Paris and Iris Lemon. Each woman sees him at different emotional time in his life and at times intersect with each other. As an up and coming athlete, Roy first meets Harriet Bird and was immediately attracted to her, “marvelously interested in her, so much had her first glance into his eyes meant to him, and he already felt a great longing in his life”(Malmud 9). He loved her look, “face striking, a little drawn and pale . . . nylon legs made Roy’s pulse jump “(8). Although Harriet didn’t feel the same at first meeting, she soon warms up to Roy after the “contest of skills” against Whammer at the carnival (21). Once Roy proved his worth by getting a hit off of Whammer, the leagues Most Valuable…show more content…
Memo Paris finds Roy simple minded and easy to control and with her seductive looks Roy was willing to follow. Even though she was Bumps girlfriend Roy often thought about her and became emotionally attached to her, “always in the act of love she lived in his mind”(Malmud 71). Memo drained the life out of Roy, so much so he could no longer be the best in the game with her on his mind.
The most influential woman in Roy’s life is Iris Lemon. Despite his quick unclear physical attraction towards her, Roy is inspired how she stood in the stands to “show her confidence in him”(Malmud141). She is the inspiration he needed to get over his Memo slump. Not knowing her name Roy is on the search to find his muse and is unite with her. “Despite his good intentions he was disappointed right off, because she was heavier than he had thought”(145). Even though physically she is not what Roy Hobbs preferred, she is still beautiful is her own
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