Early American Literature
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This paper discusses how people for all time have struggled to find their voice and their own individuality. It looks at how, many times, it is foreign to people because they are being denied it by superior powers. This is the case in "Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass" by Frederick Douglass, "Incidents in the Life of a Slave Girl" by Harriet Jacobs, and "Rip van Winkle" by Washington Irving. It also examines how, other times, it is individuals' own views of the world that prevent them from finding their own individual voice, as is the case in "My Kinsman, Major Molineux" by Nathaniel Hawthorne and "Bartleby, the Scrivener" by Herman Melville. It shows how, in either instance, these works prove that once these boundaries have been overcome and the struggle of perfecting the use of one's voice is complete, a person is much better off and more whole if they speak out with their own voices, their own opinions and accept the consequences, good or bad.
From the Paper:"The story of "Bartleby the Scrivener" shares a common theme with "My Kinsman, Major Molineux" because Bartleby eventually comes to the realization that he must stand up for himself, use his voice, and take the consequences that result, that speaking up and paying for it is better than having no voice at all. Bartleby's voice is denied to him not by any individual, but by the type of work he has chosen for himself and his own views of the world. He is a scrivener for a lawyer. His days entail nothing more than copying the boring words of others several times, and then re-reading the same words to make sure they are correct. He cannot use his imagination; his job does not call for it. He cannot even look out the window for stimulation, for it is a brick wall outside the window."
Cite this Analytical Essay:
Early American Literature (2004, April 18) Retrieved February 27, 2021, from https://www.academon.com/analytical-essay/early-american-literature-50585/
"Early American Literature" 18 April 2004. Web. 27 February. 2021. <https://www.academon.com/analytical-essay/early-american-literature-50585/>