Lost in Identity Essay

Through public sentiment. biass and stereotypes. one’s individuality is capable to alter. If one is invariably criticized and put down for their physical visual aspect or their actions. they will seek to modify themselves to suit the norm. and to fit the bulk. In the three pieces. “Barbie Doll. ” Siddhartha. and “Black Men and Public Space. ” they demonstrate that through society’s outlooks and stereotypes. one’s individuality will be challenged and therefore inhibited. Merely when one’s ain finding and doggedness pulls through. will they detect their true “Self. “

In both pieces Siddhartha by Hermann Hesse. and “Black Men and Public Space” by Brent Staples. the characters were frequently seen altering and reassessing their current places in society. In “Black Men and Public Space. ” Staples recalls his past connexion with outside sentiments and pigeonholing. Black work forces are repeatedly labeled as unsafe and leery. so in the eventide. adult females would avoid him and the police officers would frequently draw him over entirely due to the colour of his tegument. Because of his changeless mistreatment. Staples is conned into believing he is some kind of baleful being who threatens everyone around him. In the terminal. alternatively of conveying his true individuality. he tries to do everyone else around him experience more comfy by “learning to travel about with attention. ” and to “give broad position to nervous people” ( Staples ) . Staples finally mutates himself into person so inactive that his lone intent in life is to fulfill others.

In Siddhartha. Hesse’s portraiture of Siddhartha illustrates the prototype of suppressing “Self” and understanding one’s ain individuality. At first. Siddhartha attempts to contend back outside force per unit areas. nevertheless he excessively falls into the trap. As Staples journeys through New York and Siddhartha through India. the waies they decide to take are rather similar. For illustration. shortly after separating ways with Govinda. Siddhartha travels to a new town with fresh obstructions waiting to be overcome. Upon reaching into the new town. Siddhartha owned no secular ownerships except for the apparels on his dorsum. Siddhartha shortly meets the town’s really ain love kept woman. Kamala. and she informs him that he will non be permitted to analyze love from her unless he attains three things: expensive apparels. places and a house.

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Although Siddhartha easy could hold dismissed her conditions. he felt as if he was obligated by society’s criterions to populate a affluent life. Basics on the other manus besides lives a written life because he alters everything about himself. from his standing propinquity to even blowing excess clip to do certain others don’t experience as if he is following them. In the terminal. Siddhartha grows wary of social outlooks and learns that it should non regulate what he does. If Siddhartha were to rede Staples. he would state him that alternatively of digesting uninterrupted racial inequalities. he should take clip to look deep within himself in order to restore the interior peace that would finally draw him off from outside outlooks.

Another common subject addressed in these three pieces is the thought of suiting into society’s original. In “Barbie Doll” by Marge Piercy. her character would give anything to look good and fit into the crowd. Similarly in today’s society. adult females are continuously pressured to fit a certain function and look a specific manner in order to experience welcome. It doesn’t do sense why healthy. intelligent and strong adult females crumble under the low self-pride of others. Womans are acquiring so torn up by their peer’s reviewing that they focus more on the changeless negative reminders. instead than their positive qualities.

At the terminal of the fresh Siddhartha. Siddhartha ends up making Nirvana by suppressing his “Self” and larning to interrupt free from society’s clasp. On the contrary. the stoping in “Barbie Doll. ” Piercy’s character could no longer manage any more unfavorable judgment so she “cut off her nose and legs and offered them up” ( Piercy ) . Merely so did society acknowledge her beauty. the beauty of the painted on undertaker’s cosmetics and the “turned-up putty nose” ( Piercy ) . Even though Siddhartha wouldn’t justice “Barbie Doll” on her expressions. he would nevertheless review her on how she gave into outside force per unit areas. Alternatively of allowing society’s outlooks take root and suppurating sore within. like Staples. she should hold listened to her “Self” . and lived her life through the true beauty found indoors.

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Staple’s error in “Black Men and Public Space” is closely intertwined with “Barbie Doll’s” in that they both are caught in society’s appreciation and they have problem clawing their manner back out. Since Staples has grown so accustomed to the design of other people regulating his every gesture and every idea. the thought of seting his pes down and standing out from the crowd seems wholly impossible. If this attitude persists. the lone foreseeable result is one that will take to his undoing. “Barbie Doll” resembles Staples’ ever-growing uncertainness with his life. If Staples continues his parody and protract his changeless mistreatment. he will finally turn out like Barbie Doll. person who was so thirsty to savor her existent individuality that in order to get away from the hole she dug herself into she had to kill herself. For Staples. it is non excessively late.

Towards the terminal of “Black Men and Public Space. ” he admits to “whistling tunes from Beethoven and Vivaldi” ( Staples ) . Staples is under the feeling that “a mugger wouldn’t be trilling bright. cheery choice from Vivaldi’s Four Seasons. ” so by happening a manner to get by with his state of affairs. Staple’s repressed individuality leaks out through the signifier of music ( Staples ) . Siddhartha suggests that one’s ain individuality will ne’er be lost. no affair how far one might venture from it. they will ever rhythm back to it in the terminal. So with Staples. nevertheless hibernating his former “Self” remains. the return is inevitable.

As people develop through outside influences every bit good as their ain demand to suit in. the connexion with their individuality will fight to return. As a consequence. people become even more degage from world and unrecorded as if they do non hold a head of their ain. but like a machine that is programmed to make as others tell it. In the three pieces of literature. “Barbie Doll. ” Siddhartha. and “Black Men and Public Places” they try to warn their viewing audiences of the dangers of going excessively attached to what other people think. Alternatively of listening to others and obeying their every bid. we must believe for ourselves and make our ain guidelines and outlooks to populate by. “One must happen the beginning within one’s ain ego. one must possess it. Everything else is seeking- a roundabout way. error” ( Siddhartha 5 ) .

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Plants Cited

Hesse. Hermann. Siddhartha. New York: Bantam Classicss. 1981.

Piercy. Marge. “Barbie Doll. ” Circles on the Water: Selected Poems of Marge Piercy. Ed. Alfred A. Knopf. New York: Knopf. 1982.

Basics. Brent. “Black Men and Public Space. ” The Norton Reader: Eleventh Edition. Ed. Linda H. Peterson and John C. Brereton. New York: W. W. Norton and Company. Inc. . 2004.