Essay on Literary Analysis of Two Short Stories from Jesus’ Son by Denis Johnson

Essay on Literary Analysis of Two Short Stories from Jesus’ Son by Denis Johnson

Length: 887 words (2.5 double-spaced pages)

Rating: Better Essays

Open Document

Essay Preview

Jesus’ Son Analysis Essay
Eun Ju Oh

Drugs are known to be the shortcut to nefarious and decadent life. Jesus’ Son is a collection of stories containing vivid narrative about life as a drug addict. These stories are all told in first person narrative, which is perhaps one person who is suffering from poverty and drug addiction. They are seemingly disconnected but are all about the experience of drug addiction, working together under the theme of drug addiction and how it fragments people mentally and physically. “Car Crash While Hitchhiking” and “Work” both convey this theme by using abrupt tone and unique figurative language. However, “Car Crash While Hitchhiking” characterizes the protagonist more directly to reveal the fall of protagonist because of drug.
“Car Crash While Hitchhiking” and “Work” both follow the stream of consciousness of the narrator, which shows the influence of drug on people’s mentality. Both stories are confusing with the narrator moving around the time and place; it seems as if the narrator is talking about whatever comes into his mind without specific plot or message. In “Car Crash While Hitchhiking,” the narrator talks about the family that picked him up, and suddenly switches to the story of him and salesman by saying “…But before any of this, that afternoon, the salesman and I …” (4) In “Work,” narrator says “And then came one of those moments,” (52) when he recalls a memory about his wife while talking about Wayne. Both stories shift abruptly without proper conjunction. In everyday lives, people think of numerous things. However, what they say are limited, as they talk consistently with a specific purpose, considering factors such as time, place, and appropriateness before they speak. On the other ha...


... middle of paper ...


...gonist will eventually destroy himself for drug and alcohol. Also, on page 54, narrator says “…but you were my mother.” just because she poured more drink than he paid for. Protagonist’s mental destruction is so severe that even a little more drink can make a stranger his mother. “Work” is more implicit in terms of showing the fall of drug addicts compared to “Car Crash While Hitchhiking.”
Drug leads to individual’s mental and physical collapse; “Car Crash While Hitchhiking” and “Work” both convey this by abrupt and confusing plot that follows narrator’s stream of consciousness, and unique figurative language. However, “Car Crash While Hitchhiking” delineates protagonist’s destruction more directly. Jesus’ Son provides readers with second hand experience of being high on drugs by unique tone and diction that emulates the experience of drug addicts almost perfectly.

Need Writing Help?

Get feedback on grammar, clarity, concision and logic instantly.

Check your paper »

Essay on Comparing Jesus Christ and Harry Potter as Heroes

- If there are two names that can be recognized anywhere in the world, one would definitely be Harry Potter, and the other would surely be Jesus Christ. On one hand, Harry Potter is known as the protagonist of the best-selling Harry Potter book series, which was written by JK Rowling. He is a boy wizard who encountered many different trials and tribulations during his stay in the Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry. The seven books have been read by millions of children and adults all over the world, and its popularity was evident when four books in the series were on the New York Times bestseller list all at the same time (Brown 32)....   [tags: Literary Analysis]

Better Essays
2609 words (7.5 pages)

Jesus: Teacher And Healer Essay example

- “While claiming full unity and equality with God, Jesus was very active as a teacher and healer. Through his parables, direct teaching on important topics, and miracles, Jesus used commonplace human situations to tell us about God’s interest in each of us, the way to make good choices in our life, and about the Kingdom” (Adult Learner’s Guide). Parables What is a parable....   [tags: Religion Religious Christianity]

Free Essays
1648 words (4.7 pages)

The Use of Religion as a Literary Element in Oedipus Rex Essay

- The Use of Religion as a Literary Element in Oedipus Rex and how it Influences the Use of Religion in Modern Western Literature Famous novelist, C.S. Lewis, stated, “Literature adds to reality, it does not simply describe it. It enriches the necessary competencies that daily life requires and provides; and in this respect, it irrigates the deserts that our lives have already become” (“Literature Quotes”)....   [tags: Oedipus Rex Essays]

Better Essays
1107 words (3.2 pages)

Luke's Gospel and The Teachings of Jesus Through Parables Essay

- Luke's Gospel and The Teachings of Jesus Through Parables Introduction ------------ The coursework is about the parables that Jesus taught to his disciples and to anyone else who wanted to learn about the kingdom of God. It is also about the kingdom of God, topics about this include how to get in to the Kingdom of God, what it is, and what it means to a Christian. Parables covered in this coursework include: * The good Samaritan * The lost coin * The lost son * The narrow door * The parable about the coming of the Kingdom of God Each of these can be found in Luke's gospel and they each have a particular meaning that means a great d...   [tags: Papers]

Free Essays
2359 words (6.7 pages)

Using the literary and linguistic concepts and approaches of I Syng Essay

- Using the literary and linguistic concepts and approaches of I Syng of a Mayden, this essay will be focusing on how the anonymous poet conveys religious ideas throughout the poem. The poem was written by an anonymous poet in the 15th Centaury How does the poet convey religious ideas in the poem 'I Syng of a Mayden'. Using the literary and linguistic concepts and approaches of 'I Syng of a Mayden', this essay will be focusing on how the anonymous poet conveys religious ideas throughout the poem....   [tags: English Literature]

Better Essays
821 words (2.3 pages)

Matthew 17: 1-13 Essay

- Introduction The passage of this exegetical paper, Matthew 17:1-13, is the narrative of the transfiguration of Jesus on a mountain with three of His disciples Peter, James and John as witnesses. Literary Criticism Context Matthew 16:21-28, the passage before mine, Jesus had revealed to His disciples His upcoming suffering, death and resurrection. He informed them that His followers would have to take up their cross to be with Him. Carrying your cross in that period of time meant a torturous, painful and humiliating death, therefore, it meant being willing to die to follow Christ....   [tags: The Transfiguration of Jesus]

Better Essays
3270 words (9.3 pages)

Raymond Carver’s Cathedral and Denis Johnson’s Jesus’ Son Essays

- Generally considered that the American Dream consists of a healthy family, a well-paying job and a sturdy home. A lot of people dream about it and use all their opportunities to achieve it. However, the socioeconomic situation of the United States is an obstacle to this ideal. The characters who inhabit Raymond Carver’s Cathedral are blue-collar Americans confused and illusioned by the hollow image of an American dream they see on the TV screen every night. Denis Johnson’s protagonists, however, have never heard of an American dream, and are certainly not devoted to achieving it; their lives slip by a state of alcoholism and drug use and futures become brutally shapeless....   [tags: Cathedral, Jesus’ Son]

Better Essays
2101 words (6 pages)

The Story of Gerasene Demoniac Essay

- Introduction The story of the Gerasene demoniac sticks out in the minds of a casual reader of the Gospels. Jesus steps out of a boat and immediately comes upon a demon-possessed man dwelling in the tombs. Jesus casts these demons into a herd of pigs. They all die. The villagers quickly beg for Jesus to leave their region. Over some time, scholars have studied the differences in the Gospels. Each Gospel writer has purpose for including certain passages of scripture to convey their meaning. Taking this into consideration, what is each Gospel’s purpose for story of the healing of the demoniac....   [tags: demons, jesus, tomb, gospel]

Better Essays
1274 words (3.6 pages)

Jesus 's Parable Of The Prodigal Son Essay

- Introduction Jesus’s Parable of the Prodigal Son, found in the book of Luke, Jesus extols the power of repentance and forgiveness, as the lost son is welcomed back by his father after he repents. Synopsis In The Parable of the Prodigal Son, there was a father with two sons. When the younger son matured, he asked for half of his father’s wealth, and he father complied. However, he went and squandered that wealth in a foreign land. After the man had depleted all his savings in irresponsible living, a famine struck his country, and he needed to find work....   [tags: Sin, Repentance, Jesus, Christianity]

Better Essays
852 words (2.4 pages)

Biography of the Literary Works of Dylan Thomas Essay

- "Drunk with melody, and what the words were, he cared not." This was a very common view among early commentators about Dylan Thomas (Cox 1). Thomas was a poet who was either loved or hated. It depended on the individual, and how they viewed his poetry. He was very famous for his poetry because it contained visions of life, aspects of birth and death, fear, grief, joy, and beauty. At a younger age, Thomas was a very violent poet. As he grew older, he spoke for all men greatly when he wrote. He wrote his poems referring to the qualities and sensations of life....   [tags: Dylan Thomas Writers Poets Poetry Essays]

Better Essays
1612 words (4.6 pages)