Power of Power

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Among the most complex systems is a simple yet overwhelming desire for an establishment of power, if one(it?) does not already exist. Power can be greedy, selfish, aggressive, but also a necessity for order and peace. It is always controlling. It has existed since the beginning of time and will continue to play a vital role in the lives of all, forever. In literature, power can be depicted in a variety of ways, affecting different numbers of people and things. Margaret Atwood’s “Helen of Troy Does Countertop Dancing”, Toni Cade Bambara’s “The Lesson”, Henrik Ibsen’s “A Doll’s House”, and Alice Walker’s “Everyday Use” each uniquely examine the influence of power in their characters’ lives. The roots from which power takes place, the depths one will travel to maintain or gain greater power, and the ways people are ultimately shaped by these influences are represented in these texts and explore the power of power. Power can be a very dangerous thing. Often it deals with a growing obsession with materialistic items, financial security and prosperity, protection, social status, and superficiality. It also travels deep below the surface, and becomes a source of permanent damage and ruin. By human nature, people conceive themselves as powerful or powerless, big or small. They crave a freer life in which the opportunities are endless, where there is no thing or person halting them from experiencing all that life has to offer. In each story or poem, characters feel the loss and gain of power, what it means to desperately want control and the world at your fingertips. In “A Doll’s House”, Nora Helmer finds herself a victim of hopelessness as her husband, Torvald and acquaintance, Krogstad both hold authority over her, demanding her to ... ... middle of paper ... ...ature contributes to the powerless people working their way to have control over their lives, allowing themselves to also be free. There are many potential ways for a group to respond to authority of another. Works Cited Atwood, Margaret. “Helen of Troy Does Countertop Dancing.” Poets.org. Academy of American Poets, n.d. Web. 3 Dec. 2013. Bambara, Toni Cade. “The Lesson.” Literature: A World of Writing: Poems, Stories, Plays, and Essays. Eds. Ana M. Acosta and David L. Pike. New York: Pearson, 2012. 634-38. Print. Isben, Henrik. “A Doll’s House.” Literature: A World of Writing: Poems, Stories, Plays, and Essays. Eds. Ana M. Acosta and David L. Pike. New York: Pearson, 2012. 568-600. Print. Walker, Alice. “Everyday Use.” Literature: A World of Writing: Poems, Stories, Plays, and Essays. Eds. Ana M. Acosta and David L. Pike. New York: Pearson, 2012. 271-76. Print.

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