Sunday, August 4, 2019

Ahab and Unas Incestuous Relationship in Naslunds Novel, Ahabs Wife :: Naslund Ahabs Wife Essays

Ahab and Una's Incestuous Relationship in Naslund's Novel, Ahab's Wife The incestuous nature of story telling which is featured in Ahab's wife is reminiscent of the Anne Sexton's poem, Briar Rose. Una is in a constant search for sustenance. Her mind as cannot exist without the hope of learning and engulfing knowledge. As a child, it was the occupation of her father to appease her insatiable appetite. This was done with stories and the boundless possibilities she was allowed to find within the recesses of her mind. As time progresses and Una grew, her father started to question the conclusions and presumptions that these internal scavenger hunts were building within her. Una could never understand why Ulysses, her father, did not take out his aggression on her mother, who was also a nonbeliever. "She remained unconverted. Why did his wrath not fall upon her? "(Naslund 21). But as his daughter Ulysses was looking for something which he could never truly hope to find in his wife. Just as the king in the Briar Rose Ulysses would have "force every male in the court/to scour his tongue with Bab-o/ lest they poison the air she dwelt in/ thus she dwelt in his odor./" ( Sexton he wanted to have her mind in his hands for his molding. He was looking for reflective surface from which he could evaluate his story, or at lest the story which he has come to tell himself. This story consisted of many parts all of which would then be combined to create his identity and the life he had built for himself. By not being able to 'convert' Una, there by making her believe his story as true, Ulysses has to admit to failure. Not only does she prove his story incorrect, but s he also reflects the entire make-up and construction of it as being flawed. This flaw becomes magnified by Una's intellect. By having the power to continually question what her father hold as infallible she destroys the constructed image of the man he though he was. Children are to be impressionable and easily persuaded. As a father Ulysses want to share a special bond with his daughter as she mirrors his believes through her everyday life and thinking. As someone who is indifferent to his teachings and ideology he feels that he has failed as a father. Even if Una had disagreed with his teachings, it would be preferable to enticing no emotion.

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