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The Price of Success in the United States - Essay Example

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For example, Yamashita writes, “It was one of those odd moments in liberation theology in which a messenger named Arcangel stood at the top of Angel’s Flight…with his arms raised to the heavens” (Yamashita, pg. 213). The text also indicates that, “By the time he had traversed fifty meters…(people) had run forward…to cup their hands to catch the blood and sweat from his torn stigmata” (Yamashita, pg. 75). In these regards, Arcangel is presented as a sort of Jesus figure, existing outside the realms of contemporary social morality in favor of a newly defined path. In large, Thoreau, through Walden, establishes a value system that is similarly outside the confines of his contemporaries.
            Another prominent similarity between Arcangel and Henry David Thoreau is witnessed in their articulation of labor in the contemporary world. At one point Arcangel views his thoughts as a poem; in these regards the text states, “Everybody’s labor got occupied in the/ industry of draining their/ homeland of its natural wealth” (Yamashita, pg. 146). Such an articulation of labor is indicative of individuals who blindly participate in the workforce without questioning it on a deeper level. In large part, such concerns mirror similar philosophical views presented by Henry David Thoreau. For instance, Thoreau famously criticized individuals who blindly joined the military. Thoreau himself sought ways of escaping the mainstream notions of employment though his hiatus on Walden Pond. Ultimately, both individuals demonstrate similar perspectives.   ...Show more
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Summary

In the paper “Price of Success in the United States” the author analyzes the situation of Arcangel, the main character of Karen Tei Yamashita’s text, who choose to live outside of society, and the decisions this character makes as compared to those of Henry David Thoreau.
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