Could somebody please explain this essay prompt to help me understand it better? Discuss the ideas developed by the text creator in your chosen text about the human need to reconcile the...

Could somebody please explain this essay prompt to help me understand it better? Discuss the ideas developed by the text creator in your chosen text about the human need to reconcile the uncertainties of the past with a new or present situation.

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teachsuccess eNotes educator| Certified Educator

You asked for an explanation of the prompt: 'discuss ideas developed by the text creator in your chosen text about the human need to reconcile the uncertainties of the past with a new or present situation.'

Depending on your particular text, you can use textual evidence to illustrate the main themes of the story. This just means that, if you have finished reading your assigned text, the next step is to determine what the major themes are. Use the themes to illustrate how the author demonstrates the need to reconcile the uncertainties of the past with the present.

Take The Kite Runner, for example. One of the major themes of the novel is betrayal. Early in the novel, Amir betrays Hassan's trust by choosing to do nothing when Hassan is raped by Assef. Later, he callously ignores Hassan's mental and emotional suffering in the aftermath of the rape. Additionally, Amir compounds his betrayal by falsely accusing Hassan of theft. As a result, both Hassan and his father, Ali, are driven from Amir's household.

Another major theme of the novel is redemption. In fact, most of the novel concentrates on Amir's quest to redeem himself from his past failures. He has to prove his manhood to his forbidding father, Baba, as well as make right the wrongs he perpetrated on the faithful Hassan. To do this, Amir must reach into his past, determine his culpability there, and then resolve to choose different paths in his present life. In this story, the protagonist looks back at an uncertain past because he had yet to form his own masculine identity and his own moral values at the time. Now, because of what he has learned from his past, he is able to choose different actions in his present. The human need to reconcile the past with the present is the human need for redemption and closure. The themes of the novel highlight Amir's journey from guilt to redemption.

So, for any text you work with, you can answer your prompt by:

1)establishing the themes of your novel.

2)focusing on a character who has had a troubled and uncertain past, but who chooses to change as time continues.

3)using textual evidence to illustrate moments the author introduces ideas or themes about redemption and closure. For example, is the character hounded by guilt? Like Amir, does he show a change of heart after much internal conflict? Is there evidence to show why the character chooses to act differently in his present? If there is, what is the result of these actions? In essence, show how the character makes peace with an uncertain past by choosing better responses and coping skills in his present.

Hope this helps!

 

 

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