Barnes/Historical Timeline.

 

“Then she began to bark also, crawling after him -barking in a fit of laughter, obscene and touching. The dog began to cry, running with her, head-on with her head, as if to circumvent her; soft and slow hi feet went. He ran this way and that, low down in his throat crying, and she grinning and crying with him; crying in short and shorter spaces, moving head to head, until she gave up, lying out her hands beside her, her face turned and weeping; and the dog too gave up then, and lay own, his eyes bloodshot, his head flat along her knees” (Nightwood, 150)

Each book we have read has touched on many themes, brushing over politics, class, race, as well as characters finding and learning things about themselves through various obstacles. It seems as if, in Barnes Nightwoodthe characters Nora and Robin are trapped in their oppressed natures, this being a theme of many books, whether it be books that touch on race, such as Cane and Their Eyes Were Watching God. In Cane similar to Nightwood, we see characters realizing their oppression and having the answer to it, but being over ruled by the actions of others. Such as in Bona and Paul, where Paul tries to tell Bona what he’s figured out but she has already left him behind (Cane, 105-7). In contrast, Nightwood’s characters come together and leave Paris and go back to America, but Robin is still in unrest. Perhaps she feels she has betrayed her community of independents back in Paris. Though, In Faulkner’s As I Lay Dying, the family which tries to bury their mother’s casket, faces many physical obstacles which are mostly direct results of class issues, such as the bridge being out and no other ways to cross, but using their own ingenuity. Many of the challenges Robin and Nora face as well as other characters are mainly mental challenges. Moving to Anand’s Untouchables, we see similar mental struggles with Bakha where he understands what he needs to do, but cannot explain it to self righteous and stubborn people around him and in his government. Again where as instead of changing things man characters in these three books just keep trying to survive and in turn are still oppressed by ignorance around them. Lastly, Hemingway suggestively shows the mental struggle of his characters, as well. But, his solution seems to be death, where death act as a liberator from ignorance; in contrast to Robin’s lashing out of a personality, which results in perceived pseudo insanity.

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