For a story by an author to be signified as a classic literature piece, it requires a timeless feature which the main passage can echo throughout the ages. Particularly, a relation to society's behavior and values. The characters, created by Washington Irving, most especially Tom Walker, gives us an insight on how his life centered predominantly on wealth up to the point where he is consumed by temptation. Tom Walker’s engagement in a deal with the Devil portrays how money-driven society has become more prominent through the times of the 1700s and today's world.
At each stratum of society, there is the misconception of correlating money and character. Jim’s mother risked her life and that of her only son to get her ‘dues.’ “[I]’m an honest woman,” she proclaims and intends to prove this proclamation by taking only what is owed (Stevenson 17). It is astonishing how her perception of value is skewed. She sits counting money in the face of imminent danger. She values money over the safety of herself and her son. It is when danger is at the door that Jim is able to pull her back from the brink of death and disaster.
Irving theme in this short story is that all action have consequences. In the story Tom tries to trick the Devil by becoming more pious that others who have religious their entire lives. However, it does not work, because one day the Devil comes back for Tom “holding a black horse, which neighed and stamped with impatience” (Irving 359). This small segment of imagery supports the theme, because the horse is anxious and impatient as if it has waited a long time to be here and take Tom away to what he deserves. The reader can imagine a horse that is rearing and ready to go. It demonstrates that even if Tom protected himself for a little while the Devil still came back to dispense the consequences for the deal he and Tom made together. Tom worked as a usurer to gain a large fortune that he wanted, just so he could flaunt it in an ostentatious manner. However he wanted to get this money easily by bartering with the Devil to find an agreement that made him rich quickly. He did get this money but he suffered consequences because of it, and when the black horse swept him away all of his earthly treasure disappeared as well. “All his bonds and mortgages were reduced to cinders”, his chest of gold and silver was “filled with chips and shavings”, and where his two horse were “two skeletons lay in his stable” (Irving 359). He was never able to enjoy the money he made, because of the actions he took to gain it. On the other hand, Tom never did enjoy his money, because of his stingy nature. Tom wanted all the money he could get his hands on, but he never wanted to spend a dime. In addition with the added fear of the Devil coming at any time Tom was always on edge and at peace. He made a deal with the Devil and the Devil made him suffer the consequences of his actions. Old Scratch and his black horse carried him off after Tom agonized under the unknown time the Devil’s return.
In “On Natural Death,” Thomas appeals to the readers by contemplating the subject of death with an academic approach that includes facts, data, and information. Thomas successfully transforms death from an awkward, emotional subject to a more comfortable intellectual one. This engages the readers by placing contemplation of death and dying within the confines of a more manageable and rational context. His gradual exhumation of death eases the audience into pondering the subject in the absence of emotional stress. The essay transitions from the death of an elm tree to that of a mouse. This is followed by Thomas giving a significant amount of attention to a scientific explanation of death, and then finally the description of the near death experience of a human. This use of an academic appeal moves the audience to a comfort zone with the subject of death and circumvents the common response of avoidance. The reader is simultaneously desensitized to the gravity of subject matter and given permission to consider death and dying without the normal societal negative stigma associated with the subject.
Death is a topic that unites all of humanity. While it can be uncomfortable to think about, confronting death in unavoidable. “Dying” addresses that discomfort and universal unwillingness to consider the inevitability of death. Pinsky’s use of imagery, symbolism, and tone create a poetic experience that is like death, something every reader can relate to. In “Dying,” Pinsky describes how people are oblivious and almost uncaring when it comes to the thought of death. Pinsky is trying to convince the reader that they shouldn’t ignore the concept of death because life is shorter than it seems.
Now I realise it seems a bit hypocritical of me to attack the media’s representation of a news event when I myself am a part of the hype-generating circus we call mass media. However, the voice of my wise, high-school English teacher echoes in my subconscious that we should always be critical of the texts we consume and conscious of the
The theme death has always played a crucial role in literature. Death surrounds us and our everyday life, something that we must adapt and accept. Whether its on television or newpaper, you'll probobly hear about the death of an individual or even a group. Most people have their own ideas and attitude towards it, but many consider this to be a tragic event due to many reasons. For those who suffered greatly from despair, living their life miserably and hopelessly, it could actually be a relief to them. Death effects not only you, but also those around you, while some people may stay unaffected depending on how they perceive it.
"He and... Wolfsheim bought up a lot of… drugstores… and sold grain alcohol over the counter… I picked him for a bootlegger and I wasn't far from wrong." said Tom Buchanan (Fitzgerald 133). Jay Gatsby is a man who has just become one of the wealthiest men in New York and claimed to have received his money from his "wealthy", but dead relatives. Tom Buchanan is a man who was born into wealth and has always had money and what he has wanted since birth, unlike Gatsby. F. Scott Fitzgerald utilizes the motif of death in his novel, The Great Gatsby, to define the American Dream. Throughout the novel the reader is introduced to Jay Gatsby and Tom Buchanan's affairs, conflicts, and struggling relationships. Although in the beginning the two seem content with their wealth, throwing parties and owning mansions, as the novel progresses, Fitzgerald inconspicuously conveys this is not the dream one should live, showing the more malignant perspectives of their rich lives, like unfaithfulness, portraying that one should focus more on relationships than wealth.
BrandonKarson BrandonMrs. WheatleyEnglish 3 period 87 September 2017Dear Walter,I remember you driving me places, telling me how you want to be rich. Youwere insulting your Job, your wife's Job, and your Moma job. Iwant to tell you something I told my brother “Love is All Powerful” (Henry 59). Money is not what defines you, It can not make your life better, Love can. If you can just loved your wife and kids, and be happy for what you got. Think about how much you love your family, not money.Dont think about money all the time because money can possessed you. Your Moma said”how come youtalk so much about money” Hansberry 54 You said “Because it’s LIfe Mama” Hansberry 55. Walter money can't buy you happiness
Jay Gatsby in F. Scott Fitzgerald’s The Great Gatsby and Willy Loman in Arthur Miller’s Death of a Salesman are both American men in pursuit of the American Dream which is, to acquire wealth, success, and prestige. This quest for money drives modern-day America, but behind our perpetual urge to consume and possess lays a grim motive. It is human awareness of mortality and the subsequent desire to prove we are special and somehow resistant to death that fuels the longing for wealth and possessions. The belief in money and materialism have come to be the primary goal for individuals during this time. Even though we know everyone will eventually die, we strive to attain enough money and objects so that we might be the exception, or at least,
By biological logic, we human beings will face death sooner or later in our life and death has its very own ways to approach us - a sudden deadly strike, a critical sickness, a tragic accident, a prolonged endurance of brutal treatment, or just an aging biological end. To deal with the prospect of death come different passive or active reactions; some may be scared and anxious to see death, some try to run away from it, and some by their own choice make death come faster. But Viktor Frankl, through his work Man’s Search for Meaning, and Bryan Doyle; in his essay “His Last Game” show us choices to confront the death, bring it to our deepest feelings, meaningful satisfaction. To me, the spirit of the prisoners at deadly concentration camps, Frankl’s Logotherapy theory of “. . . striving to find a meaning in one’s life is the primary motivational force in man.” (99), as well as the calmness of Doyle’s brother on his last ride, like an awaken bell, remind us of how precious life is, how we should find the significance in every act of living, determine to live a meaningful life at any circumstances; hence, when death comes, we can accept it without anxiety nor regrets.
In the play “everyman” death is depicted as something that is terribly feared as no one seemed ready for it, death is perceived as something that takes one away from the pleasures of this world.
Expressions such as these only distance Tom from benign human tendencies, leaving him less worthy of receiving any compassion from his audience. By creating a character like Tom, Fitzgerald leaves the reader with the impression that one born into and consumed by wealth will become the most unappealing and bland character of all. In this way the author leaves a sense of emptiness associated with Tom and continues to sew the thread of emptiness in all other characters consumed by wealth in his story.
In his song “All Falls Down,” mildly talented musician Kanye West emotionally raps, “We buy our way out of jail, but we can’t buy freedom.” Criticizing how those that are wealthy are able to control the world around them with their money, able to use it to get even “out of jail,” West asserts that such a reliance on wealth is ultimately restricting, as it cannot buy intangible things such as “freedom.” In F. Scott Fitzgerald’s The Great Gatsby, the titular character, Jay Gatsby surrounds himself with wealth and extravagance in order to leave his previous life of dullness and banality and pursue an unrealistic and fragile love with Daisy. Though he is able to assume a new, affluent identity, he is ultimately unsuccessful in love, as his wealth disconnects him from reality, preventing him from realizing the impossibility of his goal. Nick Carraway, the narrator of the novel, maintains a sort of obsession with Gatsby, becoming sucked into his extravagant and wealthy lifestyle. However, by doing so, he begins to see the world in a new yet almost fantastical light, where even he is unable to comprehend the consequences of his actions and mannerisms. Under this, Fitzgerald contends that wealth and materialism are crutches that ultimately serve to skew and misrepresent surrounding reality.