What is the main conflict facing the main characters?Wallace and Redmond

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dymatsuoka eNotes educator| Certified Educator

Wallace's main conflict is having to choose between the rational world and the world of imagination in his life. A successful politician, he is haunted by the recurrent vision of an inviting door in a wall.  He knows if he opens the door he will enter a magical world of happiness and fancy, but because of the demands of life and his career, he never has a chance.  By the end of the story, when he apparently finally decides to allow himself to open the door, he makes a fatal error.  His long denial of the imaginative side of his nature has left him unable to distinguish fantasy from reality. 

The main conflict facing Redmond, who represents the voice of reason, is whether to believe Wallace's fantastic tale or not.  Giving credence to the story would validate the importance of nurturing both sides of the human personality - the rational and the imaginative.