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One possible thesis idea for Faulkner's "The Bear" would be to investigate the suggestion, which is emphasized at the end of the story, that the small elements of nature may undo the large conquests of humankind over nature. After Boon Hogganbeck kills the legendary old bear Old Ben, he finds himself face to face with a serious problem with squirrels. The small things of the forest seem to have risen up in reaction ans protest to the conquest of the big thing in the forest. This suggests that Faulkner is posing a question about the ultimate success of humankind's ability to control nature, a question supported by the ecological issues facing America and the world today. You might search the text for other ways Faulkner sets up this question and for suggestions of Faulkner's answer.
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