ERIC Number: EJ1068441
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2014
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 24
Mortal Imperfection: The Revenge of the Social Animal in "Heart of Darkness" and "Moby Dick"
Journal on English Language Teaching, v4 n3 p8-20 Jul-Sep 2014
This paper seeks to explore and peek into the psychological hell of the so-called superior beings who, in their megalomaniacal intentions make the world a difficult place to live for some groups based on ethnicity, culture, race, religion, and other differences. It looks into the duplicity and double standards of people and the way they exploit a privileged birthright to target and demean other groups exalting themselves as the preferred "self" over the marginalized "others". The sham of superficial, social lifestyles is exposed as the web of morality and a politicized sense of right and wrong is questioned. Power structures that uphold society are based on flimsy differentiations that utilize the principle of "might is right" as a power hierarchy is established to subjugate and exploit the less-privileged and weaker groups on Earth. This research challenges the subject-object duality and the veneer of civilization that is rampant in the modern world and that views the world in a sharply divided vision of black and white, ignoring the grey shades where the question of individuality, identity and personality arises-the potency of the beliefs of all beings cannot be neglected by imposing labels of "savages" and "barbarians". The act of imposition by the civilized world over primitive groups itself is an act of savagery and this paper would be questioning why man is unwilling to come to terms with his "other", the part that completes him and defines him, and is an essential part of his evolving personality. The core of evil and primitivity is ineradicable in every being and it is individuality that will control the behavior, not forcefully imposed social constructs. There is a very thin line between what the civilized world calls "normal" and what it labels as "savage" as man was essentially born as natural as the wilderness around him, his soul as unfettered as the soaring eagle. This untamed wilderness is man's reality and when he tries to harness it, he transgresses upon values that are inevitably connected with his history, his evolution, his concept of civilization and his superstructure of formal education. Is it really a civilizing, enlightening mission of transforming brutes into human beings or making others as hypocritical and pretentious as the colonizing powers are, at the expense of personal integrity?
Descriptors: Social Bias, Social Attitudes, Social Stratification, Power Structure, Authors, Novels, Psychological Patterns, Ethics, Violence, Racial Bias, World Problems
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A