Three Concepts That Apply to “Bread”

Topics: Altruism, Selfishness, Personal life Pages: 3 (957 words) Published: July 7, 2008
“Bread” by Margaret Atwood thoroughly discusses the issues and problems within the modern society by making the readers to imagine different scenarios and dilemma from different view. The situations the author portrays contain several essential elements in people’s daily live, such as food, life and choice. However, Atwood not only illustrates the above factors, she also implies the negative side of human being and society in her article. The facts like greed, jealousy and ambition have perhaps the most influential impact to people and the society they live in. Overall, the article summarizes three important concepts that may affect one’s decision and have great impact to the society; that is the selfishness and selflessness within a person and his compassion to others around him.

Selfishness is probably the most common characteristics in human and it reveals when there is time to make a decision between people themselves and others. In “Bread”, the author tells the readers a well known German fairytale to illustrate people’s selfishness. In the tale, a poor sister begs her rich sister for some bread to feed her children but gets rejected and drove away. Then the husband of the rich sister comes home and tries to cut himself a piece of fresh bread, he is astonished to find out that the bread out flowed streams of blood. By using this allegory, Atwood reminds the readers the severe impact the selfishness within people have to the society. That is people usually are over ambitious and greedy toward what they already have therefore refuse to give up some of it to help ones in need. Like the rich sister in the article, a loaf of bread is not a big deal to her but she just refused to provide food to her poor sister. There are too many selfish people who are self-centered in which they always put themselves above everyone else. They seldom care about others and only mind their own business. This phenomenon has caused the loss of humanity in the...
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