There's No Place Like Home

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Dani DiPentino
WR 101
10/20/10
There’s No Place Like Home

As a little girl growing up in a tiny Illinois farm town, I would often dream of moving to Chicago and becoming somebody completely different. When I finally arrived there after graduating from high school, I was absolutely overwhelmed. After a while, I discovered that while my location had changed, I was still that small town girl. Since that time I have asked myself: is home merely a state of mind? Is geography nothing more than a physical location? And, in the case of Christopher McCandless and Gerald Broflofski, can changing your identity be as easy as changing your zip code? I do not believe that to be the case. In fact, I find the opposite to be true. It is one’s experiences and morals that makes a person who they are. Location, ultimately, is just a backdrop.

As a young man, Christopher McCandless is raised in an upper-middle class family in a metropolitan area on the East Coast. He is educated, athletic and well travelled. His family is part of the All-American culture of comfortable suburban homes, country clubs and higher education. His athleticism and education both play into his previous survival for four months in the Alaskan bush. Similarly, South Park’s animated character Gerald Broflofski is living the typical American dream in his little part of the world. He resides in urban Colorado with his homemaker wife and two sons. Broflofski is part of the regular-Joe society of South Park. Both of these individuals have building blocks that have been laid that determine who they are by these experiences.

Additionally, McCandless tries to push aside the morals of his upper middle class rearing and he turns his back on a financially secure future, but it is those very qualities that give him the tools and the belief to go out on his own. His studies in Anthropology and History in college help to develop his desire to live a less complicated nonmaterialistic, more virtuous lifestyle....
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