Foremost, both stories are about men who once were very prosperous, but created their own demise. In “The Swimmer”, Neddy, the main character, initially seems to have a perfect life. “His life was not confining and the delight he took in this observation could not be explained...” (Cheever 216) He had a perfect family, high social status and very few problems in his life, or so he thought. His life is so wonderful that anything objectionable is repressed. Not until he takes the “journey” into realization, where he learns through others that his life has fallen apart. Neddy’s character is very similar to Charlie from “Babylon Revisited”. Charlie was very splendid in fortune until, he lost both his wife and his daughter due to his uncontrollable alcoholism. However, after “controlling” his drinking problem, he decides that he wants nothing to d...
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...ies of personal disasters. Neddy and Charlie caused their own failure because of the choices they made. Both characters shared similar lifestyles and problems but were presented differently in each story. Also conclude to no definite solution to their problems, leaving a sense of ambiguity. This gives the story’s a humanly feeling, causing the reader to feel companionate towards the characters. Both characters endured through a sequence of misfortune to convey a similar message; the present depends on your past actions.
Cheever, John. “The Swimmer”. Short Fiction: Classic and Contemporary. 6th ed. Ed. Charles Bohner and Lyman Grant. Upper Saddle River, NJ: Prentice Hall, 2006.
Fitzgerald, F. Scott. “Babylon Revisited”. Short Fiction: Classic and Contemporary. 6th ed. Ed. Charles Bohner and Lyman Grant. Upper Saddle River, NJ: Prentice Hall, 2006.
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