Clyde: Result of Fate or Bad Choices?

709 Words3 Pages
James Allen stated, “Man is made or unmade by himself. By the right choice he ascends. As a being of power, intelligence, and love, and the lord of his own thoughts, he holds the key to every situation.” An American Tragedy, written by Theodore Dreiser, demonstrates the power of choice through the life of Clyde Griffiths. He is doomed to failure due to the choices he made in life. By ignoring consequences in order to satisfy his needs and wants, Clyde proves that his decisions were free will and not the result of fate. His choices lead to a trial, where Clyde is deemed guilty and is faced with the electric chair. Clyde is a victim of his own bad choices in Kansas City, Lycurgus, and ultimately Big Bittern Lake. In Kansas City, Clyde chose to go against his gut instinct and ended up fleeing from the city. Page 123 indicates the qualms Clyde had about riding in a “borrowed” car with his friends to go on a daytrip. However, he still makes the choice to go because he desires to belong and be with Hortense Briggs. This choice leads to the killing of a young girl by the speeding car. In ...

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