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Healing Literature and Society Views - Essay Example

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Here too prejudices and hatred held


The literature that tried to answer and guide people during the century, had to be either

Utopian or dystopian, showing them the ideal ways of living and ideal solutions. or, hold

a mirror to their mistakes by showing a world where everything is wrong. (The dystopia

Novel). The solution should be somewhere in between and include all perspectives and

points of view.

NATURE WRITING movement started by Henry David Thoreau pointed to ways of

living fundamentally divergent from the ones laid down by dominant dictates and

attitudes of society. (David L.Barnhill).Other authors have followed in the footsteps

giving their poetic solutions in their Fictions and Essays. Iron John , is a Work of the

Vietnam war trying earnestly to heal the wounds and bring together the alienated

members of the society. The book talks about the industrial civilization which cut

asunder the father and son who once worked shoulder to shoulder , teaching and learning
, bonded by that common experience. The father figure is no longer a reality in the war-

ravaged America. He is at best a frustrated, battered man who returns from the pressures

and stress of the workplace, too irritable to empathize, and at worst, a drunk, and more

often, a deserter of the family. The youth are angry with the older men for pushing them

into a war, butchering them without mercy while they themselves are safe .Old men fend

for themselves and have not time to spend in understanding the grievance of the younger

generation. Men just grow up angry at the loss of their childhood, disappointed with the

barrenness of their manhood and tired of having to play roles imposed on them by

society;they become...
But that is wrong; for, he must have the instinctive answer to the challenge of violence. Men must not be playing roles according to societal demands. The boys, in order to achieve this instinctive wisdom, must be early on removed from their mothers and even fathers, to learn in a commune as in all ancient cultures and civilizations.( BLY) Bly's conviction is that Man must mature and discover his maleness , by not losing touch with the earth ,and the historic and anthropologic roots of Masculinity. This world demands that Man must be successful. He obeys and achieves it, but at a cost. His vitality is lost. Instead, Bly asks them to turn to the inner consciousness "from where all poetry and mythology springs."(BLY) It is his prescription to cure the crippled inner life.
Bly touched a cord in all the American minds that had also been smarting under the pain. But he also invited the criticism that he was propagating a male chauvinist society. For, he seemed to address only the White and did not seem to take the Homosexuals into his reckoning. Starhawk who wrote during the same period, and against the same Vietnam war backdrop, had an utopian solution to offer. She creates an oasis of verdant ,fruitful , and happy people of multi generation and multi culture living in harmony with nature and in amity among themselves. ...Show more


Robert Bly 's solution is that our boys must be taught while very young, to FEEL their way through life; they have to experience the society of old and wise men of the community .They should be initiated by these patriarchs into the ways of wisdom. Initiation means dreams and visions that would visit the Novice shaping his spirituality.
Author : bergstromjuana
Healing Literature and Society Views
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