"Conversation with a Cupboard Man"- I. McEwan

Mind Map by , created almost 6 years ago

English Mind Map on "Conversation with a Cupboard Man"- I. McEwan, created by kuemli on 11/15/2013.

Created by kuemli almost 6 years ago
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1 misleading title: pseudo-conversation - no direct speech of social worker ( more like monologue)
2 Affinity to confessional or therapeutic narratives
3 Initiation narrative: integration of young protagonist into society
4 Main questions/issues
4.1 adulthood/maturity
4.1.1 "How did I become an adult? I'll tell you, I never did learn. I have to pretend. All the things you take for granted I have to do it all consciously. I'm always thinking about it, like I was on the stage."
4.2 masculinity
4.2.1 "He always wore blue suits. He owned a garage in Clapham and because he was big and successful he hated me at first sight. ... He was so big and strong and full of himself I suppose he couldn't bear to think that people like me existed."
4.3 social norms and individual " normality"
4.3.1 "You might say that at least he was normal. But I'd rather be me anyday."
4.4 Individual identity (and its instability)
4.4.1 "He never remembered our last conversation or who he was. I don't think he knew who he was himself. Like he didn't have an identity of hiw own."
5 critique
5.1 Indirect social critique: is it desirable to be a member of the society depicted in the story?
5.2 ambivalent reception perspective: Cupboard Man as "freak" or as social critic?
6 Ironic inversion of conventional initiation structure: Cupboard Man unable/ unwilling to integrate
6.1 no progression/ maturation, but regression and withdrawal from society

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