Dead Poets Society

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“Seize the day” or in Latin, Carpe Diem, is a theme used throughout the film Dead Poets Society. The English professor, Mr. Keating, uses the quote of “sucking the marrow out of life” to encourage his students to seize every moment the day has to offer and to never waste it. One of Mr. Keating’s students, Charles Dalton, displays Carpe Diem in such a way that it turns out to have negative results. Charles Dalton’s acts of publishing an article in the school newspaper, punching a fellow classmate in the face, and bringing girls to one of the Dead Poets Society meetings are all examples of how he “seizes the day”.

Dalton proves that he is incapable of making wise decisions throughout the film. At one point Dalton decides to publish an article in the school newspaper. In the article he mentions that girls should be allowed at Welton Academy. Not only did Dalton publish the article unlawfully, he also signed it “DPS” without the consent of the other members of the club. His article lead to an assembly in the church where outraged faculty members were determined to put an end to the Dead Poets Society and find out the culprit behind the newspaper article. Dalton “seizes the day” and pushes his limits too far when the headmaster asks for the person or persons behind the article to step forth. Dalton at this time pulls out a ringing phone and answers it, interrupting headmaster Nolen, and shouts out loud, “phone call from God, he thinks we should have girls”. His actions
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