Up In Michigan

Decent Essays
In the short story “Up in Michigan” by Hemingway, two characters are put in a stressful situation that greatly portrays their inner personalities. Jim Gilmore is a blacksmith in a small town and frequently ate at D. J. Smith’s where Liz Coates worked. They became fond of each other and then Jim left on a hunting trip. When Jim returned, Liz greeted him and they went off with their friends to celebrate. In the ending scene of the story Jim sexually assaulted Liz while he was intoxicated. Learning theorists might explain Jim’s behavior as social learning through reinforcement. However, on the other side of things, learning theorists might explain Liz’s behavior through Rotter’s theory of locus of control. For example, as Jim and Liz were left alone, Jim began to touch Liz sexually. Liz kept on thinking that she was frightened, but also wanted it to continue further. As the moments passed, Jim continued to push things further even though Liz kept on saying that they should not continue any…show more content…
Rotter might argue that this created Liz to develop more of an external Locus of Control personality, where she believes that she has no control of life situations and whatever happens is going to happen. Even though Liz had the ability to fight back or call for help, she still did not try to stop the situation at hand. I also found it interesting that after she was raped, she still cared for Jim and kissed him on the cheek. This makes me believe that in further sexual situations Liz will be submissive and allow whomever she is with do what they want to do. This learned helplessness might impact Liz in other scenarios in life, such as in marriage or in a career. She now will have the ideology that everything is out of her control, and might become very submissive and unwilling to stand up for
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