Power and Corruption (We create generalizations and try to influence…
Power and Corruption
We create generalizations and try to influence others to fit into them
Page 466 -67 “You know, all through the centuries, pathetic men have abused strong women who threaten their masculinity...”
This generalization is over a long period of time and tries to show how men have put women down so that they can feel more powerful and masculine.
Page 116 “You are turning me into what i never have been and never wanted to be, a nag, because you are not living up to your end of every basic compact.”
Amy feels as though Nick has turned her into someone that she has never wanted to be. This shows how Nick has had an influence on Amy's personality and has changed her for what she fears is the worse.
Page 425 “So, like, what men are supposed to do in general.”
The broad generalization of how men are all supposed to act creates a negative perception of men. This also tries to fit all men into one box without exception, which would not work with the diversity present in our society.
Page 181 “...womanly art of articulation.”
Nick describes talking as womanly. This shows how he believes that taking is for women and tries to separate himself from things that he associates with woman.
Page 351 “Abused women like escapism, of course.”
This generalizes how women who are abused are supposed to act. By doing this it forces women who have escaped abusive situations are supposed to act
People hide who they really are so that they can conform to the ideas set by society
Page 132 “I wanted to smack her, right then, the obliviousness, the girliness, of her: trying to get an ego stroke from the husband of a missing woman.”
While Nick would not smack her in public he does express the desire to hit her after she flirts with him shortly after Amy's disappearance. This shows how Nick's values differ from those of the women.
Page 316“… that would restore my perfection. It would make me the hero, flawless and adored”
Amy attempts throughout the entirety of the story to be perfect. Her goals all aim for her to be seen as flawless and to be loved by not only her family and friends but also all those in society.
Page 462 “All along you acted… inappropriately. Unemotional, flippant.”
The authorities try to tell Nick that the way he reacted to the situation was wrong. By doing this they they show that there is a way to act that is expect of men who's wives go missing.
“… would have annoyed Old Amy to no end…”(page 375)
Amy conform to her new environment and changes her personality so that she can fit in and be accepted by those who surround her.
Page 442 “My face is a mask of fury -- poor little lamb, my ass -- but I can pretend it is because of betrayal.”
Nick hides the real reason that he is mad so that his reasons are accepted by those who surround him.
Often we make assumptions on people based on only one persons side of the story
Page 458-459 “The diary isn’t a pretty picture of you, Nick,... Abuse - you pushed her around. Stress - you were quick to anger. Sexual relations that bordered on rape. She was very frightened of you at the end there.”
Amy's journal paints a very negative picture of Nick. While Nick was not the best husband to Amy, Amy was able to manipulate the police by giving her side of the story but they authorities don't believe Nick's side of the story. This shows how we make assumptions based on stories without knowing what really happened
Page 268 “Amy and I weren’t trying to get pregnant. She didn’t want to get pregnant, Rand, I don’t know if she was ever going to be.”
Nick lies to Rand to create an image for himself and make it seem as though it was Amy who didn't want the kid and not him. Without being able to hear Amy's side of the story, Rand is forced to believe that Nick is not lying and that Amy was the one who did not want kids.
Page 285 “He was accused of date-raping Amy in 2005.”
When Amy accused Tommy of raping her she planned it so all the signs of rape were present. By doing this Amy made it seem as though Tommy was guilty even though he was not. This shows how without hearing Tommy's side of the story the authorities made assumptions about what happened.
Page 463 “Hilary Handy has made two suicide attempts in the years since high school. Tommy O’Hara has been in rehab twice.”
Hilary and Tommy are considered unstable for their past mental health issues. They are judged without questioning what drives their poor mental health.
We corrupt others by telling them who they need to be so that they can be satisfied.
Page 316 “A story that would restore my perfection.”
Amy is obsessed with the idea of achieving perfection and strives for perfection throughout the book. Without this perfection Amy becomes unsatisfied and finds new ways to achieve perfection.
Page 346 “Amazing Amy is tempting as is. Amazing Amy knocked up is irresistable.”
Amy tries to find the best ways to be adored by the general public therefore spreads a rumour that she is pregnant so that she becomes more talked about and loved, while at the same time causing Nick's falling.
Page 93 - “I’ve worked since I was fourteen years old. I didn’t get to go to fucking tennis camp and creative-writing camp and SAT prep and all that other shit that apparently everyone else in New York City did, because I was wiping down tables at the mall and I was mowing lawns and I was driving to Hannibal and fucking dressing like Huck Finn for the tourists and I was cleaning the funnel-cake skillets at midnight.”
Throughout Nick's life he has had to work for what he has which contrasts to Amy who has a large inheritance from her parents and doesn't need to work a day of her life. After Nick and Amy have lost their money their lives start to spiral out of control. This shows how they believe that money is the key to their happiness.
“…I was too moony about the notes… She knows exactly what I wanted to hear. You are brilliant. You are witty”(page 344)
Nick takes the superficial information from the quotes to satisfy what he wants to hear. This shows how Amy's opinion has value to him and how Nick wants to be all the things that can be associated