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Frank Norris's Novel McTeague Essay

Assignment id 1009913
Discipline Biology
Assignment type Essay
Words 1184
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Frank Norris's Book McTeague Frank Norris's novel McTeague explores the decay of culture in the early twentieth century. Place in San Francisco, "a place where anything can happenwhere fact is often stranger than fiction" (McElrath, Jr. 447), Norris explores themes of greed and naturalism, revealing the darker side of human psyche. What can be seen most disturbing is the way that Norris portrays McTeague, in shocking detail, as nothing more than a brute creature at his core. Norris investigates the greed and barbarous animalism that lurks in McTeague. McTeague is first portrayed as a gentle beast. The reader is introduced into McTeague because he sits in his mouth demeanor, smoking his cigar and drinking his own steam beer. He is described as a tall, very slowly moving man. McTeague's mind was as his body, thick, slow to act, slow. However there was nothing vicious about this guy. Altogether he indicated the draft horse, immensely strong, stupid, docile, obedient (Norris 7). Instantly one can envision McTeague, a large lumbering bulk, going about his everyday activities in quiet solitude. The dental practice that McTeague conducts supplies him with a solid income, and at the very first few chapters of this book, he desires nothing more out of life than to practice what he enjoys. "After he opened his Dental Parlors, he believed that his life was a success, that he could hope for nothing greater" (Norris 7). Upon meeting Trina, his best buddy Marcus's love interest with regards to him because of a busted tooth, his mind starts to change and animalistic feelings begin to well up within McTeague. "The man, virile want in him tardily awakened, aroused itself, both powerful and brutal. It was resistless, untrained, a thing never to be held at a leash a minute" (Norris 25). Norris uses the animal vision to describe the deterioration of McTeague's human qualities. When McTeague tells Marcus of his aims with Trina, there's a palpable tension between both characters. Although at first they behave like gentlemen, there's a silent rivalry between these. "Well, what exactly are we going to do about it, Mac?" He explained. "I don' know," answered McTeague in terrific distress. "I don' want anything to--to come between us, Mark." "Well, say, Mac," he cried, hitting the table with his fist, then "proceed. I suppose you--you want her pretty bad. I will pull out; yes, I shall. I will give he...

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