"The Gathering" by Anne Enright - Analytical Essay

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  • Topic: Mother, The Police, Dark side
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  • Published : January 29, 2012
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“The Gathering” by Anne Enright - Analytical Essay

This book “The Gathering”, sheds some light on the dark side of human behaviour. It shows that every single event that occurs in the past, effects your present actions and attitudes, and that laughter and happiness are some of the greatest weapons against the dark. The Kraken attempts to make each member of the Chain vulnerable, by breaching their weaknesses and talking about their worst memories, so that they get distracted from the true battle.

“The past has the power to influence present actions and attitudes but it must be left behind for progress to be achieved.” This idea is used on many occasions during the book, such as how Nathanial’s behaviour is influenced during his childhood. Nathanial’s father was a violent man, who liked to have complete control over everything. He was extremely jealous of Nathanial, and got angry when he did anything that got his mum’s attention, “I had to sometimes hold your mouth to stop the crying.” But his father’s darkest nature was truly shown, when he hit Nathanial’s mother, and attempted to strangle Nathanial in the zoo, while shouting, “Children should be seen and not heard!” Because of these past events involving his father, Nathanial is now a thoughtful boy and he’s very quiet. He also has dreams about a monster chasing after him in the woods, (the monster is his father). His mum is now scared that her husband will find Nathanial and herself, and attack them again, so she keeps moving houses. She is too scared to stand up for herself, so she just runs away, just like the small gorilla in the zoo. Lallie’s message to Nathanial was, “Seek beyond the shadows of the past, to know the truth of the future.”

Like Nathanial, every other member of the Chain, has a dark and unforgettable past. Indian for example, was watching over his sister one day in the park, and making sure nothing bad happened to her, when some older kids started to tease him and call him names....
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