Society, Morals, and Civilization Portrayed in the Headhunter and Cat's Eye

Essay by Brandon1982College, UndergraduateD, March 2002

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Society can be viewed as the people who collectively live in any region or period; their manners and customs, civilization, moral or material condition all define society.

Society is not just people as a group but it is an individual's moral perception of how he lives through apocalyptic paradigm and his moral values.

Society, along with moral values, can have the underlying affect together to impact one's life. Values of one's personal beliefs can be interpreted as how society views each individual. Differences in society and moral values interact together to form civilization.

Together cilvilzation and moral values form how a person views and lives their life. As a person is older, parenting becomes more impactful and affects how the child lives his life, forming his own personal beliefs in a civilized fashion.

In both novels the Headhunter by Timothy Findley, and Margaret Atwood's Cat's Eye all of the ideas of societal views, moral values,, and civilization are represented with vivid imagery.

In respect to the works, the main character's Lilah Kemp, in the Headhunter exhibits very strong societal views through her actions. She creates and explains a futuristic society, which affects her life. This also is the reason she becomes schizophrenic. After she loses her job of being a chief librarian, she is convinced that a character from a novel is stalking her, and she blames society for his presence in her confused life.

When Lilah says:

"This mustn't happen right here, I cannot bear to have it happen here..." (Findley 5)

She thinks Kurtz is set from the novel Heart of Darkness though he never exists in real life. Throughout Lilah's schizophrenia she shows how she deals with people through having a wacky imagination.

Dealt with society in a different fashion from Lilah's schizophrenia but no less significantly...