Mccarthy creates a bleak post apocalyptic society through the use of imagery. He describes a world where there is no wildlife and all that’s left are the ashes. “The road was gullied eroded and barren. The bones of dead creatures sprawled in the washes. Middens of anonymous trash”(177). While the man and the boy travel the road, they rarely come across other living things. The boy even shows a lack of knowledge about animals, constantly asking his father questions about them. They always have to keep moving due to the constant threat of danger. Their nomadic lifestyle prevents them from becoming attached to anything. This gives the feeling of absolute isolation. Throughout the novel, the man often has dreams of life before. His dreams are described in vivid colors, "walking in a flowering wood where birds flew before them he and the child and the
McCarthy’s The Road exemplifies the struggle to survive throughout the entire novel. In the most trying times, during the longest stretches without food, the father’s persistence and confidence
The Road is about a father and a young boy who take on the south after a huge catastrophe hits the world. The father and boy in the story are never named, which makes it very hard to read. They have many hardships like finding food, supplies, and shelter. They come along many different things like abandoned houses, people, and terrifying landscapes. When the father and young boy come upon the house and different people, the reader is excited because you never knew what was going to happen to the main characters, and when something good happened, their success was your success. Even though they battle through these hardships they find a way through it. The Road has a deep explanation of the road, the father’s dream, and the different people the man and the boy meet along the way. The author, Cormac McCarthy, uses imagery to make the descriptions vivid and clear which adds to the intensity of the novel.
In the road, Ely has obviously given up on life, and people in general. “Things will be better when everybody’s gone… when we’re all gone at last then there’ll be nobody here but death and his days will be numbered too.” While Ely is not hateful or evil towards human beings like the bad guys, neither does he feel any inclination to help others. If he ever had a purpose in life, it would have been religion based, as he says “When I saw that boy, I thought that I had died,” and to the man’s question, “What if I said that he’s a god?” he replies, “I’m past all that now. Have been for years. Where men cant live gods fare no better.” The phrase “where men cant live gods fare no better” can be interpreted to mean that men carry their gods within them. When men get broken by suffering, their gods also disappear. McCarthy seems to be implies that religion centered purposes are also selfish and self-centered and that it is one’s own happiness and comfort that allows one’s god to exist. The Man is similarly selfish in purpose, which centers around the one boy, his son, who he deems his salvation. The man is able to kill other people with no hesitation when it comes to protecting the Boy and similarly shows no inclination to help others. Only because of the Boy’s begging and the recent replenishment of their food supply, does the Man allow the old man to share a meal with them.
In the novel, The Road, Cormac McCarthy illustrates the expressions, settings and the actions by various literary devices and the protagonist’s struggle to survive in the civilization full of darkness and inhumanity. The theme between a father and a son is appearing, giving both the characters the role of protagonist. Survival, hope, humanity, the power of the good and bad, the power of religion can be seen throughout the novel in different writing techniques. He symbolizes the end of the civilization or what the world had turned out to be as “The Cannibals”. The novel presents the readers with events that exemplify the events that make unexpected catastrophe so dangerous and violent. The novel reduces all human and natural life to the
Early on in the novel, the reader begins to learn that the The Man and The Boy have a very close and intimate bond. Rather than causing a strain on the their relationship, the isolation that constantly follows the pair on The Road actually made their bond as father and son stronger . Traveling along The Road by themselves causes The Man and The Boy’s relationship to become extremely codependent. The Boy relies on The Man like any child would rely on their father. The Boy completely counts on The Man for everything, including food, shelter, clothes, and everything else that is needed to survive on The Road. The Man keeps them safe from the “bad guys” and keeps them alive and as healthy as he can. The Boy’s needs are always put before The Man’s needs. However, The Man depends upon The Boy just as much as The Boy depends on him. If it weren’t for The Boy, The Man would have been dead a long time ago. The only reason that he has survived this long is because of The Boy. Making sure The Boy survives is the only meaning that The Man has to his life. The Boy’s continued existence is the most influential motivation
Cormac McCarthy, in his seventh novel, delves into the realm of a post-apocalyptic era in which a father and son journey to survive. McCarthy is known for his dark writing style and vivid imagery in his writings. He uses these to develop the characters and the themes of his novels. In his bestselling novel The Road, McCarthy uses this imagery and dark writing style to develop the characters of the father and son, their struggle to survive, and the themes of morality, isolation, and love.
In a world where survival is your only concern, what would you do to stay alive? This is one of many thought-provoking questions that Cormac McCarthy encourages in his book, The Road. McCarthy, a Rhode Island native is a seasoned author, with more than 14 other works in his portfolio. McCarthy is a very private man, and there isn’t a lot known about him. The lack of information on McCarthy does not reflect his writing abilities, which are very strong and not lacking at all.
The Road portrays the journey of the father and son across a black and white world that is analogous to my experiences of the quest of survival in Afghanistan and the refugee camp in Pakistan. Where many have abandoned their beliefs and morals to survive the hellish situation. Those who survive with their beliefs and values still in intact are constantly challenged on a day-by-day basis. Their survival must be persevered to keep the fire burning, however small for their own children. There must be some goodness that remains for their children to carry into the next generations. They must always remain
We often consider the world to be filled with core truths, such as how people should act or what constitutes a good or bad action. In The Road, McCarthy directly challenges those preconceptions by making us question the actions of the characters and injecting a healthy dose of uncertainty into the heroes’ situation. From the very beginning, the characters and their location remain ambiguous. This is done so that the characters are purposely anonymous, amorphously adopting all people. While on the road, the order of the day is unpredictability; whether they find a horde of road-savages or supplies necessary for his son’s survival is impossible to foretell. While traveling, the boy frequently asks “are we the good guy” and the father always replies with “yes” or “of course,” but as the story progresses this comes into question.
The encounters and interactions the man and boy had while on the road help develop McCarthy’s larger theme of humanity losing its selflessness when it’s in danger. For example, while the man and the boy are traveling to the coast they come across a burnt man, half-dead lying in the road. After some observation, the boy asks the man if they could “help him” but is continuously shot down by his father who repeatedly tells him to “stop it” (McCarthy 50). The Road’s setting is one of the strongest over the weak, those who can’t survive for themselves they simply won’t. This burnt man, who was struck by lightning, is an example of that as he is now in no condition to scavenge for food and medical supplies and will probably just die where he currently sits. The boy, realizing this, wanted to do something to give the man even a small chance at survival, but the man knew he was a lost cause and should be left to die. The boy and his overwhelming desire to help the dying man is representative of old society and its pressure to help those with lesser than you, ideals that were result of religious codes and churches. But in a world where none of that matters or is present, the man is what humanity has become, selfish being whom only care about
In Passage A, McCarthy uses ambiguous and foreboding dialogue in order to generate narrative suspense. At the beginning of this passage the father and the son come upon a house at the edge of an old town’s remnants, and the boy asks his father where they are (105). The father ignores the
Cormac McCarthy’s The Road is his post-apocalyptic magnus opus which combines a riveting plot along with an unconventional prose style. Released in 2006, the novel has won awards such as the Pulitzer Prize and the National Book Critics Circle Award (Wilson). Oprah Winfrey also selected the book for her book club ("Cormac McCarthy”). The author, Cormac McCarthy, was born in 1933 in Rhode Island and is said to have wrote the novel because of his son and their relationship. The Road centers around a boy and his father while they try to survive after an unknown disaster occurs. While some people may argue that the unusual style takes away from the novel, it adds to the tone and meaning of the work.
The boy who travels with his father finds purpose to survive in believing that they will one day find the good guys. In this he believes that they themselves carry the torch of being the good guys and finds hope in that. Throughout the novel, the boy expresses his heart for helping others several times when he gives an old scraggly man on the road a can of peaches, pleading to help a man who got struck by lightning, and by being worried about a boy who was alone they had passed on the road. The boy evidently through his actions expresses a need to help others. When the boy spotted another little boy from the road, he ran over to where he had seen him and searched for him. When the Father saw that the boy ran off, he grabbed the boy by the arm and said “‘Come on. There’s no one to see. Do you want to die? Is that what you want?’” Sobbing, the boy replied, “I don’t care, I don’t care” (85). The boy sees the little boy as alone with nothing and he feels like it is his responsibility to his own
Imagine yourself living in a barren, desolate, cold, dreary world, with a constant fear of the future. The Road, written by Cormac McCarthy and published in 2006, is a vivid and heartwarming novel that takes us through the journey of a father and a son as they travel South in a post-apocalyptic environment facing persistent challenges and struggles. McCarthy proves that love unleashes immense strength to overcome obstacles, even in times of desperation.