The novel "Dead Poets Society" Essay
Dead Poets Society visualizes the conflict between realism and romanticism as these opposing ideals are presented to the students at this single-sex boys’ preparatory school - The novel "Dead Poets Society" Essay introduction. Walton Academy is based on tradition and excellence and is known for its strict structured lessons formed by the realistic and anti-youth administration. Every time a new season begins, hundreds of parent’s leave their sons in the strict hands of Welter’s staff hoping they will end up prepared to educate as doctors or lawyers.
The novel “Dead Poets Society’ written by N. H. Cleanable is set at a preparatory school called Walton Academy. At the welcoming ceremony for new pupils, Mr.. Nolan is introduced and explains the main principals of the academy, which are tradition, excellence, discipline and honor. Keating, the new English teacher, who has been a pupil there many years ago, gets introduced. He is inspired by values such as passion and love, which he integrates in his classes.
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His slogan is CARPER DIEM, which meaner “seize the day’, therefore he wants his pupils to think on their own and become individual persons. Some boys re-found the “Dead Poets Society’, which they covered looking for information about Keating at the library. This is a secret club, where the boys meet in a cave to read and write poems to express their emotions. Because of these meetings, the boys’ lives change. Charlie Dalton gives himself the new name “Unhand” as a prank against the school.
Todd Anderson loses his shyness. Knox Overstress and a girl fall in love by talking about poems. Neil Perry finds his passion in acting, and he even gets to be the main character in “A Midsummer Night’s Dream”, which makes his father angry. The father therefore rings Neil home and wants him to go too military school, which makes Neil so sad that he commits suicide Neil. Keating is held responsible for the suicide by Neil’ s parent’s and the school administration. He therefore gets fired.
Shortly before Keating will leave school to take his last items, the boys step on their desks, despite the director’ s orders to sit, and shout: “Oh captain! My captain! ” as a thank you’ to Keating. The story ‘Dead Poets Society takes place at the Walton Academy, which is located long time away from the civilization. This rural setting is critical for the school as it moves the influence of the civilization, which is shown by one of the “four pillars” of the school tradition’.
The school is placed in New England, which is known for it’s old and British traditions. This is shown in the book where traditional Scottish music can be heard during the first meeting in the new season. These things show how the students and teachers of the school are getting used to the traditions Walton can offer. John Keating is the new teacher at Walton, and Nolan introduces him at the first a very good British School and that he has to replace the old English teacher who had o retire. John Keating graduated from the academy many years ago.
Many people were surprised by the fact that Keating was the new teacher, since his teaching methods are unorthodox compared to a normal teacher, especially at Walton. Keating is a big inspiration for the boys in the book. They learn to seize the day and to live their lives the fullest. He is therefore one of the reasons for Neil to commit suicide, as Neil wants to be remembered as a legend. Keating wants the boys to live their lives in an extraordinary way. Keating tells the boys that they should call him “O Captain!
My Captain”, which is a poem about the assassination of Abraham Lincoln. The assassination of Lincoln and Settings removal from teaching, which is his biggest passion, can be compared, as Lincoln died for what he told the world, and Keating symbolically “died” a similar death through the process of being fired from his teaching position at Walton for going against the standard teaching methods. I do not think that Keating is a main character in the book because he looks more like a source of inspiration for the boys than a real character.
But the things that the boys earn about Mr.. Keating drive the story that takes place through the book. He is therefore generating the drive in the book. Keating does not change his behavior or realizes that he is doing something wrong through the book, which supports my conclusion: Keating is not a main character in the book. Keating is, as I said earlier, not following the normal line of teachers. He supports a more freely tuition than his collaborates and encourages individuality: “Now, when you read, don’t Just consider what the author thinks, consider what you think.
Strive o find your own voice, the longer you wait to begin; the less likely you are to find it at all. ” The quote shows his passion for a more individual life and at a certain point in the book, Keating tells the boys that they should forget about all the things they have formerly been told about the correct way to live their lives. He wants the boys to look at certain things from different perspectives, even though it may seem stupid, because there are many ways to act, and every single way of doing it is so special. The boys idealize and worship Keating for his way of teaching.
Keating inspires his students to suck the marrow out of life”, which meaner that he wants his students to do something that makes life valuable itself. Even though it seems like Keating doesn’t have any limits about living the life, he has: There is a time for daring and a time for caution, and a wise man knows which is called for. “, he doesn’t want his students to do stupid things, they need to find their own limit, a balance between passion and discipline. Keating was, as I earlier said, a teacher in England where he lived with his girlfriend.
Keating and his girlfriend decided to break and therefore Keating moved to New England to pursue his dream and passion of teaching, and as he doesn’t have any girl to love anymore, Keating ‘pushes’ all his love into teaching and the students, which of Keating is all in all a good teacher who Just wants to help his pupils. He may be a little too creative and open-minded for a school like Walton, which is shown when he gets fired. It seems like the boys liked him, as he fast stole their attention and inspired the boys to learn more.
Dead poets society Essay
“An individual’s interaction with others & the world around them can enrich or limit their experience of belonging”
Discuss this view with detailed reference to your prescribed text & at least ONE other related text of your own choosing.
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An individual’s interaction can indeed enrich or limit one’s experience of belonging, as belonging is one of the essential needs of any human being - Dead poets society Essay introduction. Belonging can be seen in the prescribed text of Arthur Miller’s The Crucible, Peter Weir’s Dead Poets Society & Nathaniel Hawthorne’s The Scarlet Letter, where the central characters are driven by their need to belong or not belong which is ultimately stimulated by the world & people around them.
The Crucible is based on the Salem community found in Massachusetts, a small & religious Puritan village of New England on the true story of how a group of young girls began the world famous Salem witch hunts that were responsible for the deaths of many innocent people due to their desperate need for belonging. The Salem community is set in an isolated area vastly distant from mainstream society, with its own social hierarchy, belief system & way of life. Its physical setting is metaphor of its seclusion and detachment from society, creating its non-belonging identity to the rest of the world.
Abigail Williams, the niece of the town’s reverend, becomes the catalyst for the play as her affair with John Proctor drives her great desires to belong as a wife. “I look for John Proctor who took me from my sleep & placed knowledge into my heart” says Abigail revealing that it was her relationship with Proctor that arouses her sense of belonging. After failing to belong alongside Proctor she searches for other ways in which she may belong, finding it among a group of girls within the village who are fed up of being treated as children & want to be accepted within the community as respected adults. By dancing in the woods, they confirm their isolation from the Salem community as they feel the repression of their natural inclination to dance when dancing is a whipping offence; however conjuring spirits that Abigail
did in order to kill Goody Proctor is a hanging offence.
Abigail’s sense of belonging to this group of girls is identified when we see that she is the mastermind behind the ‘crying out’ when she says: “Let either of you breathe a word, or the edge of a word and I will bring a pointy reckoning that will shudder you, and you I can do it” revealing her sense of belonging through her gain of power & control over the girls that partially satisfies her hunger for acceptance.
A major character in the play that demonstrates belonging/not belonging due to their interactions with surrounding people can be seen in the character of John Proctor. Initially he is an outsider in his own family caused by his affair with Abigail, and is also an outsider in the Salem church community due to his lack of church attendance generated by his dislike of Reverend Parris that, in turn leads to his detachment from the community itself & the Salem courts. The ideology that you can only either choose to conform or not can be seen in Danforth’s speech (A Salem magistrate) when saying to Proctor “A person is either with the court or against it, there be no road in between” suggesting that his interaction with Danforth limits his sense of belonging.
After being displaced in his own family, he finds refuge in his wife after he realises that she is paying the price for a sin that he committed, and his sense of belonging becomes clear in the sense that he chooses his wife over his name & place within society demonstrated when he says “I will fall like an ocean on this court!” showing that he has chosen to not belong & will stand to suffer the consequence; death.
There are always consequences of belonging or not belonging, and this is explored in Peter Weir’s Dead Poets Society, a film set in the 1950’s about a single sex boys prep boarding school, Welton Academy, where tradition & conformity is essential until an English teacher (John Keating) arrives & revitalises the student’s way of thinking, approach to life and dares them to “suck out the marrow of life”.
Keating becomes the influence in the lives of a group of boys who unite to form an exclusive group called the Dead Poets Society who go against the status quo of the school & practise the freedom of “Carpe Diem” meaning Seize the Day” as they are enlightened on the fact that everyone only has a limited amount of days left & will soon be “fertilizing the dandelions”. So by seizing the day the young boys Neil, Todd, Charlie, Richard & other member of the Dead Poets Society exercise their minds in the art of free thinking and search their inner artists.
Neil a lively student with natural leadership qualities searches his inner self & finds that he has a passion for acting & in pursuing his dreams it is seen as an act of rebellion. Charlie Dalton falls in love with a high school girl, & in chasing the girl of his dreams, he tries to introduce the idea that Welton change from a single sex to unisex school. By doing this it undermines the ‘four pillars’ of Welton, tradition, discipline, honour & excellence which are enforced by the echelons of power & authority in the school, and in order to maintain discipline in the school conformity is physically enforced. This is seen as the principle asks Charlie to assume the position after telling him that “others have had similar actions, & they have failed just as surely as you will” then beating him showing him the consequences of not conforming.
Mr Keating himself represents the ideology of non-conformity itself through his unorthodox teaching methods. He gets the kids to literally stand on top of their desk & look at life from a different perspective & gets them out of the class room & into the playground. He discusses the issue of conformity by demonstration through the walk of 3 boys as they all begin at different strides then gradually all walk in unison while the rest of the class clapped in unison demonstrating the subconscious need of every human being to belong.
The restrictions of conformity can be seen in the use of constant cross-cutting of the interior wall & high ceiling of the school with the autumnal landscape. In one particular scene, the camera captures the flight of a flock of geese taking off into the vastness, where there are no
restriction & constraints. This is contrasted by the static shots of the inside of the imitation-gothic style buildings, where the colours of the environment are vibrant & dynamic symbolising the freedom of the geese in nature compared to the confined boys within the restrictions of Welton.
Hawthorne’s The Scarlett Letter however shows a different kind of belonging & consequence, where it tells the story of a young woman named Hester Prynne who commits adultery, bearing a child then forced to wear the letter ‘A’ on her bosom for the rest of her life, set in the 17th century in Boston. The type of belonging here is a different sort where the protagonist of forced instead of by choice, does not belong to society and then finds herself at peace with the fact that she doesn’t belong.
After her prison sentence & being made to stand bare in front of the whole town revealing her sin, she is then left to live on the outskirts of town in s small cottage by herself and her daughter Pearl. Although having the option to leave town & removing the letter in order to live a normal life with her daughter, Hester chooses not to leave embracing the letter rather than running away from it conveying Hester’s determination in creating her own identity rather than allowing others to do it for her. Here her sense of belonging is provoked during the affair with Arthur Dimmesdale where she experiences the true meaning of belonging to someone, as her marriage to ‘Roger Chllingworth’ is shown only as a union of convenience.
Hester Prynne is made to wear the symbol of shame ‘A’ that publicly humiliates her however it becomes an identity for her. Initially representing ‘adulterer’, it become the symbol of ‘able’ as she gradually gains dignity & self-respect though her charitable deeds & earning her reprieve from the ‘scorn’ of the community. Her isolation from the community is seen in Pearl’s inquisitive mind where she reveals “Mother, the sunshine does not love you. It runs away and hides itself, because it is afraid of something in your bosom. . .It will not flee from me; for I wear nothing on my bosom yet!” highlighting the metaphor used by Hawthorne to depict Hester’s sin & dark past that isolates her from the rest of society.
The idea that an individual’s interaction with others & the world around them can enrich or limit their experience of belonging can be identified in Arthur Miller’s The Crucible, Peter Weir’s The Dead Poets Society and Nathaniel Hawthorne’s The Scarlet Letter. Through the interactions of John Proctor, John Keating & Hester Prynne, it is concluded that when an individual’s sense of belonging is enriched or limited, it can have a detrimental effect in the individual and those around them that consequently are paid through the loss of life, pain or an enriching catharsis. In all texts we can evaluate that the protagonists would have rather died with their eyes open, than lived with them closed knowing that what keeps you alive is the sense of self-respect & conviction that the individual will never give up.