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RESEARCH: LAST OF THE MOHICANS

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RESEARCH: LAST OF THE MOHICANS

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  • November 6, 2013
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The Last of the Mohicans
James Fenimore Cooper was born on September 15, 1789 and by the time of his death; he was considered the “national novelist” of America. In his novel, The Last of the Mohicans, we have a classic story set in the 1700's. During this time, the French and Indian War is raging, complicated by an additional dispute between two Indian tribes, the Mohicans and the Hurons. Throughout the book we see characters with hearts that are strong and brave, but in spite of the characters, we see the inhumanity of the cruelty of the war. In The Last of the Mohicans, the theme is a conflict between civilization and savagery, and Cooper portrays a clash between races/cultures through the interracial friendship of Hawkeye and Chingachgook, through the barbarity between the Mohicans and the Hurons, and through the interracial love between Cora and Uncas. Cooper portrays a clash between races/cultures through the interracial friendship of Hawkeye and Chingachgook. The two main characters that portray this culture clash are Hawkeye, a white hunter, and Chingachgook, his Mohican ally. Cooper uses this quotation, “While one of these loiterers showed the red skin and wild accouterments of a native of the woods, the other exhibited, through the mask of his rude and nearly savage equipments, the brighter, though sun-burned and long-faced complexion of one who might claim descent from a European parentage” , to foreshadow that there is going to be a clash of cultures by showing how they differ just by appearance. Although both men are hunters, they use different weapons. Hawkeye carries a knife and a long rifle, but no tomahawk, as explained in this quote, “He also bore a knife in a girdle of wampum, like that which confined the scanty garments of the Indian, but no tomahawk” , as well as in this quote, “though a rifle of great length, which the theory of the more ingenious whites had taught them was the most dangerous of all fire-arms, leaned against a neighboring...