The Drifters

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Elizabeth Boehs
Mrs. Beekman
English 11
The Drifters essay
14 September 2010
The Drifters
Every person has there own individual ways in which they view the world. This is like a pair of glasses, unique and individual. Each pair of glasses has their own lenses that affect how someone can see through them. In the same way, there are many factors that affect how someone can see the world. Whether it’s a place, an experience, people, or the government these all can shape how the world is viewed. In the novel The Drifters by James A. Michener, every character faced different things that changed their view of the world. One character named Cato, changed his view because of race, and through some of the places he has been to. Another character named Gretchen, had some experiences and met some people who were factors that influenced her view on the world. Some factors that changed my view of the world were my past, and the entertainment that the media shows. Different people live different lives; they won’t always see the world in the same way like Cato, Gretchen, and me. We all have different views on what the world is like.

In the novel, Cato is an African American who is constantly struggling with the battle of racism. The world Cato is living in, blacks were considered unequal and viewed differently then the other races. Some would say that the Caucasian race has not always treated the blacks fair. “Our group had no special love for Nergroes, no illusions that they were better than anyone else.” (Michener 135) Along with racism from the whites, it has occurred with the Jews as well. The blacks blamed the Jews for a lot of their problems that they were having and blamed them for not being able to end the racism. “The big idea at present among the Negroes is to eliminate the Jews.” (Yigal Page 628) The factor of race has lead Cato to believe that the world is not all equal. Some people may have more power then others, and in this case it’s because of their skin...
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