The Quest for Identity in "Bottled Rocket Hearts" Analytical Essay by scribbler

The Quest for Identity in "Bottled Rocket Hearts"
An analysis of why Zoe Whittall utilizes the 1995 Referendum as a major part of her novel, "Bottled Rocket Hearts".
# 152522 | 1,236 words | 0 sources | 2013 | US
Published on Mar 06, 2013 in Literature (Canadian) , Canadian Studies (History, Culture)

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This paper explores why Zoe Whittall in "Bottled Rocket Hearts" chose to set Eve's journey to adulthood during the 1995 Referendum in Montreal, and juxtapose the search for personal identity with the search for national identity. The paper discusses how the 1995 Referendum offers a sort of framework for the protagonist, Eve, to go about her own sort of revolution pertaining to life and love, political and personal identity. The paper points out that there has never been a complete closure to the question of Montreal's position in Canada and there is still a desire for autonomy in the province, and this reminds us that the quest for identity is ongoing in almost every aspect of society - from individuals to groups of individuals to nations. The paper highlights that Whittall's book reiterates the fact that struggle is ongoing, no matter what age an individual is.

From the Paper:

"Looking at this novel from a post-nationalist perspective, it is difficult to imagine this passion and fervor for change as we come farther and farther away from the realities of that time, which is what is so enlightening about Whittall's book because she is able to transport us back to the issues that were of major concern to individuals - especially when it came to the idea of having societies with distinct cultures and languages and the threat that had to feel imminent at every waking second. That is what makes this book so imbued with the theme of identity because it is not just about Eve's identity and her quest for finding an identity, but it is also about an entire society - nations, really - struggling to find out who they are while everyone is pulling in different directions.
"Many of the characters in Bottle Rocket Hearts are activists and because of this the reader is let into political events that help to gain deeper insight into that time. The characters talk about the violence of the Montreal Massacre and the reader is further taken into the dichotomies of this era where people are searching for identity and at the same time they are trying to kill the identity of others (as seen when Eve is confronted on the street)."

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