In M.T. Anderson's novel Feed, how are the convictions of the characters shown?

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belarafon | High School Teacher | (Level 2) Educator Emeritus

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The main characters in Feed are young friends growing up in a world where corporations deliver ads and information directly to the brain. They have developed a major sense of entitlement and boredom based on this lifestyle, and have trouble finding things that excite or interest them. In the beginning of the novel, Titus, the narrator, explains that they were "riding shocks" from exposed electrical wires, after which they go to the Moon; they find neither of these diverting. Later, Titus sees a girl watching them, and his reaction shows how deeply the Feed integrates into daily life:

She was the most beautiful girl, like, ever.

She was watching our stupidity.

There was a valve that led into the food bar. She was in the valve. She had her crash helmet under her arm. She had this short blond hair. Her face, it was like, I don't know, it was beautiful... I was getting some meg feed on the food bar and the pot stickers were really cheap.

I stood there wondering what it was that made her so beautiful... maybe it was her spine. Maybe it was her face. Her spine was, I didn't know the word. Her spine was like...?

The feed suggested "supple."
(Anderson, Feed, Google Books)

Even in the midst of falling in love at the first sight, Titus is constantly distracted with food ads; the feed gives him a word to help describe his feelings. He has little individuality and no drive or ambition; his entire world revolves around the feed and how it informs his daily life. This is typical of people in this future world; they are scornful, bitter, angry, and bored, and because they don't know anything different, they have no context in which to put their feelings, and no sense that things should be different.


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