The Narrative of the Captivity and Restoration of Mrs. Mary Rowlandson

1600 Words Dec 19th, 2005 7 Pages
The Narrative of the Captivity and Restoration of Mrs. Mary Rowlandson reveals that the ghastly depiction of the Indian religion (or what Rowlandson perceives as a lack of religion) in the narrative is directly related to the ideologies of her Puritan upbringing. Furthermore, Rowlandson's experiences in captivity and encounter with the new, or "Other" religion of the Indians cause her rethink, and question her past; her experiences do not however cause her to redirect her life or change her ideals in any way. The function of religion plays a significant role in the narrative, especially the dissimilarities between the narrator's religious beliefs and the "Other" religion of her captors. More specifically the Puritan ideology of the …show more content…
It is clear that Mary Rowlandson's encounter with the "Other" causes her to doubt her past, specifically her devotion to God. At the end of the narrative Rowlandson confirms this claim with the remark: When I lived in prosperity; having the comforts of this World about me, my Relations by me, and my heart cheerful: and taking little care for any thing; and yet seeing many (whom I preferred before myself) under many trials and afflictions, in sickness, weakness, poverty, losses, crosses, and cares of the Worlds, I should be sometimes jealous least I should have my portion in this life…but now I see the Lord had his time to scourge and chasten me (50). The evidence from the narrative in many ways could characterize this work as a text in which the narrator (Mary Rowlandson) realizes her mistakes in the past and redirects her life accordingly. This is not true in the case of Rowlandson, to be more specific her experiences and interaction with the Indians do not challenge her Puritan ideologies, but rather confirms and strengthens them. When the narrator returns to her former lifestyle she in no way demonstrates any new knowledge from her experience, but rather returns home with the same degree of ignorance that she had before her captivity. Rowlandson also contradicts herself in