Personal Entrapment

Essay by murphy99High School, 10th grade September 2013

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Personal Entrapment

Sitting at the kitchen table, my brother and I listened to our grandpa tell his amusing stories about him growing up in the 1940's during World War II, part of the great depression, and living as a little boy. I sat there thinking about all of his personal experiences, like going into the army at the age of seventeen and becoming a paratrooper, and how they should be passed down for others to hear. The settings of my grandpa's army stories were set in one place but he did travel South of the United States and to some of the Asian Islands including Japan and the Philippines. My grandpa's stories express a feeling of being trapped because in the army everyone is being controlled by men in higher ranks. The men in the army can only follow the leaders and are not allowed to act as themselves.

This feeling, from my grandpa's stories, reminds me of short stories written by Edith Wharton. Edith's stories display her personal experiences and feelings of entrapment throughout her entire life and career. My grandpa's adventures display an experience that has made an impact on his life. Edith Wharton's short stories The Eyes and The Daunt Diana convey the theme of individual and societal entrapment by reflecting personal experiences through isolated settings.

One of the chief themes Edith Wharton uses is the theme of individual entrapment. The use of individuals help dramatize the major conflict throughout her stories (Stuckey, para. 6). One way a character can show individual entrapment is by being exhausted. In The Eyes, Mr. Culwin struggles with insomnia because he feels that if he falls asleep he can never get out of his entrapment (Wharton, para. 39). "But the next morning I was too the day went...