Essay on Lucky Jim by Kingsley Amis and The Edible Woman by Margaret Atwood

Essay on Lucky Jim by Kingsley Amis and The Edible Woman by Margaret Atwood

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Lucky Jim by Kingsley Amis and The Edible Woman by Margaret Atwood

The adolescent years are often associated with turbulence, illusion,
and self-discovery; however, Kingsley Amis’s Lucky Jim and Margaret
Atwood’s The Edible Woman demonstrate that more often than not, the
twenties possess these qualities to a greater extent than
adolescence. The age period of the twenties often consists of
relationships, employment and self issues and using the premise of
these uncertain times, Amis and Atwood effectively satire various
societal systems. Moreover, Amis and Atwood both implement the use of
the foil, a character who, by contrast with another character,
accentuates that character’s distinctive characteristics. In
particular, each author uses the protagonist’s two love interests as
foils to each other not only for the purpose of character contrast,
but also, to further the development of each novel. {Thus, - omit?}
Amis and Atwood use Margaret and Christine, and Peter and Duncan,
respectively as foils to each other to fully develop and promote the
growth of their respective protagonists, Jim and Marian; to develop
prevailing themes in each novel; and to illustrate the escape of the
protagonist from the trappings of a system.

Amis and Atwood both use the love interests of the protagonist as
foils to facilitate the development and maturation of Jim and Marian
respectively. In fact, both protagonists have opposing outward and
inward attributes which finally merge towards the end of the novel to
signify the maturation of the protagonist. In Lucky Jim, Amis
portrays Jim’s outward characteristics as meek and appeasing towards
antagonist individuals; however, Amis illustrates Jim’s inward
character as comical a...

... middle of paper ...

...ance of their relationship
with their respective pairs of suitors.

The use of foils in regards to the suitors of the respective
protagonists in Lucky Jim and The Edible Woman effectively promotes
the character development and maturation of the protagonists, Jim and
Marian; develops different themes in each novel; and demonstrates the
struggle and final flight of the protagonist from a restricting
system. Consequently, the stylistic device of a foil can not only be
used to emphasize differences between characters, but it can also be
used to further the development of outside characters, themes, symbols
and more. As a result, one could argue that Amis and Atwood’s use of
the foil has resulted in the foil overcoming the restrictions that the
writing system imposed upon it for its original use and instead, has
developed into a multipurpose writing device.

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