From the beginning, McCarthy establishes a stage for his readers with a beautifully worded yet painstakingly morose description of the wasteland in which his characters occupy: “Nights dark beyond darkness and the days more gray each one than what had gone before (McCarthy 3). Throughout the novel, the author makes a number of similar statements as he continuously conjures images of this “desolate country” in a markedly horrendous way. Through vivid imagery and a blend of short, choppy sentences to show the disconnectedness of the world, McCarthy successfully paints a picture of a bleak land, one that appears, at most times, to be completely uninhabited: “The land was gullied and eroded and barren. The bones of dead creatures sprawled in the washes. Middens of anonymous trash” (McCarthy 177). McCarthy also pays particular attention to the smallest, minute details that enable readers to visualize the new world. When describing the road, for example, the author seeks not to reveal the crevices of a heavily traveled path of asphalt, but instead to depict the electrical appliances scattered about the side of the road; the apple orchards in ruin, dark and deformed. These are the images of the world, or at least of what remains of the world, that stick ...
... middle of paper ...
...as been done is not an advancement of society, but instead a desecration. Upon realizing this, he takes what appears to be his only way out: death.
Once all has been said and done, one is able to come to one final conclusion about post-apocalyptic literature in the 21st century. No matter what it includes, or lacks, the predominance of the wasteland mentality is simply unavoidable in post-apocalyptic literature. The subject matter offers too rich of substance for it to be neglected, and for that reason writers like McCarthy and Atwood play it up in their respective novels. Given the chance to create scenic images and that one might never be afforded the opportunity to, these authors use their novels as a medium for foreshadowing a world that could be if humans continue at the rate they are going. Now, the only question is if their predictions will ever come true.
Need Writing Help?
Get feedback on grammar, clarity, concision and logic instantly.Check your paper »
- One of the greatest things that keep our world running is not the things we can see however the things we can conceptualize. As the world continues to progress, people widely undermine the concept of imagination. Authors like Suzanne Collins keep the concept of imagination alive by sparking ideas that could influence the world prodigiously from such vivid sources. As Susan Collins continues her work in the field of literature, her work continues to emphasize her personal family influences, influences from the idea of war, the importance that reading is for all ages, and the importance of hope in her writing.... [tags: Post-Apocalyptic, Author]
647 words (1.8 pages)
- Cormac McCarthy's novel, The Road, is the story of the journey taken by an unnamed father and his son in order to find a safe haven in a world destroyed by an unspecified catastrophe. This devastation has managed to wipe out just about every living thing on the planet. Although the novel does not clearly state what the cause of this cataclysm was, evidence suggests that they are living in what is the outcome of a nuclear war. The land is filled with ash and is uninhabited by animals and most plant life.... [tags: Book Review, Apocalyptic World]
965 words (2.8 pages)
- Dystopian Literature is the complete opposite of Utopian literature, which is an ideal society where everything is perfect, in which the world is ruled by a Totalitarian leader, or a post-apocalyptic world. Dystopian literature unlike other genres adapt to changing times and norms in society; although, we might not find Russians as scary as our parents or grandparents, our children or grandchildren may not find ISIS as scary as we do. The first work considered to be a part of dystopian literature is Utopia published by Thomas More in 1516, it’s written as a dialogue between the narrator and a fictionalized version of More.... [tags: Nineteen Eighty-Four, George Orwell]
1125 words (3.2 pages)
- The Road by Cormac McCarthy conveys a vision of the author of the post-apocalyptic world, where human nature is revealed in its extreme. In such a situation, the author explores the essence of human nature and juxtaposes primary instincts of humans to superior human values, even in the savage world, where there seems to be no place for humanism/human ideals. At the same time, the author portrays the supremacy of humanism and human values over primary instincts even when we struggle for survival.... [tags: human, natural, level]
1431 words (4.1 pages)
- World War Z, written by Max Brooks, is an apocalyptic novel that follows an interviewer on a quest to piece together the global history twelve years after the zombie apocalypse that came to be know as “The Dark Years”. This novel is said to be an “oral history” because the plot is structured around the personal experiences around the world that is documented by an agent of the United Nations Postwar Commission. For the majority, oral histories are seen as beneficial because they allow for a unique perspective in historical records that readers do not usually get a sense of in a basic textbook.... [tags: History, Historiography, Human, Oral history]
898 words (2.6 pages)
- Dystopian fiction is a critique of contemporary society based on the extrapolation a characteristic and conveying the consequences of its full expression, serving as a positive warning against excess. The Road is a post-apocalyptic film directed by John Hillcoat, based on the novel by John McCarthy which positions the audience to speculate the virulent implications of economic globalisation and capitalism arising from the Industrial Revolution. The film exposes the dark psychological depths of the human condition in surrendering to impulses, at the same time exploring the role of morality in the hope of restoring civilisation.... [tags: Natural environment, Environmentalism, Capitalism]
1317 words (3.8 pages)
- We live in a society obsessed with the future, consumed with the desires to achieve success or have great wealth. The harsh reality of the American dream is that the goals that we set so high for ourselves will really never prepare us for the trials of tomorrow. This idea was brought up time and time again in post-apocalyptic and dystopian works; they depict an image that only plagues the nightmares of the privileged people of today. Will an apocalypse turn these dreams into reality. What will come of society.... [tags: dystopia, society, knowledge]
1377 words (3.9 pages)
- Death and destruction are the epitome of a doomed world. Everything is destroyed and murders march the streets at night. Hell on earth is a gentle description. Cormac McCarthy's speculation of the end of the world, however, ensures that evil is not victorious. The biblical allusions Cormac McCarthy addresses in The Road illuminate a sense of hope in a bleak, empty world. Despite a grim first impression, the repetitive imagery of ash represents hope according to symbolism found in the Bible. Ash becomes a natural setting, described throughout the whole book, with a seemingly melancholy mood.... [tags: Analysis, Cormac McCarthy]
2440 words (7 pages)
- Theory and Practice in Post-Colonial Literatures Introduction More than three-quarters of the people living in the world today have had their lives shaped by the experience of colonialism. It is easy to see how important this has been in the political and economic spheres, but its general influence on the perceptual frameworks of contemporary peoples is often less evident. Literature offers one of the most important ways in which these new perceptions are expressed and it is in their writing, and through other arts such as painting, sculpture, music, and dance that the day-to-day realities experienced by colonized peoples have been most powerfully encoded and so profoundly influen... [tags: English Literature Writing]
4267 words (12.2 pages)
- Events that occur in the world around us shape our personalities. The experiences that a person lives through, both good and bad, have a direct relationship to that person’s growth as an individual. It could be argued that a person is the sum of their experiences, or more accurately the sum of their memories of those experiences. The memory of an experience does not always reflect the literal truth of what occurred, rather it will reflect how the experience affected the person who remembers it. Two different people who have the same experience can remember it in two very different ways.... [tags: Germany German Literature Essays]
2720 words (7.8 pages)