Are there any essay ideas for Voice In Time by Hugh MacLennan? Although specific themes are present, it's a complicated splurge of stories intertwined and it would be super helpful to get perhaps...

Are there any essay ideas for Voice In Time by Hugh MacLennan? Although specific themes are present, it's a complicated splurge of stories intertwined and it would be super helpful to get perhaps an idea of three or four specific events from the book to create an organized and intelligent product. I have my own ideas, but they seem to be wavering and shaky. Just need a bit of scholarly advice. Thank you!

Expert Answers
litgeek2015 eNotes educator| Certified Educator

A good place to start for gathering ideas would be to look at some of the themes of the book itself and then determine which one of those most interests you. Then finding research to help you examine any of these themes will be easier and more engaging.

Here are two of the most significant themes in the book:

  • Abuse of power - you could also examine man's choice to use power for good or evil. We see this in both Conrad and Timothy's personal and professional choices.
  • The importance of recording our history and learning from it. We see this in the complete obliteration of most records in the book, so as the old man pieces together the past, he is not only piecing together HIS past, but that of humanity. Remember, too, that MacLennan got his Ph.D. in history, so his studies there have informed much of this storyline.

There are other themes in the book you may find interesting, however. It is important to remember that MacLennon's writing

"encompass[es] those universal themes that arise from local political, social and human interests" (Canadian Encyclopedia). 

Read the study guide:
Voices in Time

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