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Rene Depestres Rosena on the Mountain - Book Report/Review Example

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Rene Depestre's short story "Rosena on the Mountain" is one of a kind. A lack of knowledge about the culture and background of the author and the Haitian people could affect one's interpretation of the story. For a moralist, it could be considered very sensual and unfit for general readership…
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Rene Depestres Rosena on the Mountain
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Download file to see previous pages He is at the same time dynamic in the sense that the character has evolved into a more aggressive and mature individual. Rosena, on the other hand, can be considered a round character because of her convincing personality that is consistent throughout the story. Father James Mulligan may be considered a flat character because he is a stereotype of orthodox priests who assume an appearance of holiness and are prejudiced though they are also humans and are tempted to yield to what they consider evil - sex.
If Alain is the protagonist, then the antagonists could either be the priest or Rosena, since he is torn between the two. One is pulling him to the religious/Roman Catholic priesthood, and the other towards sensual freedom and back to pagan practices.
The use of the first person point of view is effective in showing the inner conflict of the main character. The reader can easily empathise with the struggles Alain went through and share with his struggles and triumphs.
Symbolism is also present in the story. Mountain may be redundant because Haiti is actually an Indian term for mountains ("Haiti". Infoplease). Rosena is a Haitian and in the title she is on the mountain. The term could have several meanings, like a literal mountain, an obstacle, a challenge, something remote or insurmountable. The name Rosena from the word rose could stand for a flower, beautiful but thorny, desirable and challenging.
Moreover, irony Moreover, irony is evident in the whole story. Alain's pursuit for holiness is not achieved in the priestly vocation but in acknowledging his own self with all his physical and psychological longings. The priest, on the other hand, projects an image of holiness but in reality a weak person of sensual desires too. Even in the end, he philosophised about his wounded sex organ.
Of all the elements of fiction, I find the theme, revealed in conflict, to be the most outstanding feature that makes this story attractive and a distinct piece of literature. Internal struggle is the prevailing theme of the story.
Alain is torn between his culture and his religion; between his ancestral leanings and the colonial impulse; and between self gratification and living up to others' expectation. A great contributory factor to Alain's dilemma is his own roots. Could the mingling of the opposite/differing forces solve the dilemma However, Alain is forced to choose between the two. The question of what is moral and what is not is a predicament he has to face, struggle with and overcome. He has to discover later that what is good to one may be evil to others. In the end, he can never remain neutral.
This paper discusses the internal conflict that the main character, Alain, encounters as he is initiated into adulthood and manhood. The focus of the analysis will cover: culture vs. religion; ancestral leanings vs. colonial impulse; self-gratification vs. others' expectations; and "good" vs. "evil".
Culture vs. religion
Haitians are said to be intimate with friends and kin that when they communicate, they have the tendency to touch the other person. "Personal space is often not as pronounced as among some other cultures, and interaction may be very close" (Rock. Haitian Voodoo History & Beliefs). Although about 80 % of the Haitians ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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