Sunday, May 1, 2011

The Road

The Road, by Cormac McCarthy, is the story about a man and a boy trying to find civilization. The man and the boy (father and son) are some of the last survivors of a past apocalypse that wiped out most of the world's civilization. The other survivors are a group of cannibalistic people that the father and son are constantly avoiding in order to save themselves. On their journey they are trying to find more "good people" like themselves in order to keep mankind going. During the story the reader is told about the boys mother who, after giving birth, commits suicide, leaving the father alone with their new born. This event has taken a toll on the father and is one of the reasons that pushes him to continue his journey even though he is dying. Also, the only source of protection they have is a gun that only has one bullet in it. Throughout the course of the book the man contemplates using this on his son in case they get taken by cannibals. At the end of the novel the man eventually dies leaving his son alone in the apocalypse. Eventually a family of what is believed to be "good people" comes and offers the boy a place in their family in order to find more of the good civilization.

1. If you were the last of mankind, would you try to find more people, or would you take the easy way out?
2. Death is one of the main themes of the novel. Why do you feel authors use death as a main struggle that their characters must overcome?

11 comments:

James F (11-12) said...

1. If I were a survivor of an apocalypse I would definitely try to survive as long as I could. If i was taken by cannibals however, i might resort to the easy way out because i would rather have that than watching people eat me.
2. authors, i feel, use death this way because death is one of the most prominent things in life. everyone dies and in life, everyone must face their loved ones dying. having the ability to overcome the emotions that death brings and being able to move on as a stronger person is something we all must do.

allie s 11-12 said...

1. If i survived an apocalypse and was the last of mankind, i believe i would try to find more people. I would hope for others who are not cannibals, because i don't think i could live without trying. And i have to agree with James, if i was captured of course i would use the last bullet so that i wouldn't have to get eaten alive.
2. I believe most people use death because we face death and we all deal with death in our life times.
Its a way to bring all cultures together and every person can relate to this. And everything must die, and come to an end.. that's life and realizing that and understanding that can make you stronger.

Rachael B MOds 5-6 said...

I think many authors use death as the main struggle that characters face because truthfully, it IS the biggest struggle that we have on Earth. Our greatest gift is love, and the only thing working against love it death. Death forces people to have faith in the unseen, learn that life goes on, and also cuases people to make themselves redo their lives after someone they love has passed. Love steals from us when we are not ready or prepared to be vulnerable. It cares not who you are or what you have done....death is death because it is death, and we, as people, cannot change anything about it.

Kelsey M. 11/12 said...

I think a lot of authors use death as a theme because I don't think anyone can really say they are not scared of death. There are many beliefs of what comes after death, but no one really has proof that any of these beliefs are real. I think in order for people to accept death, they have to be happy with the life they live and know that they will not regret anything even if they die today. I think for people to be ready to die and accept the death of others, they must develop a whole different outlook on life.

Kristen T. 11-12 said...

1. I would look for more people, however, there would likely come a point where it would be difficult to stay hopeful if I was unsuccessful in finding others. The feeling of lonliness would be unexplainable, but I would persevere and try not to give up.
2. I feel that authors use the theme of death as a struggle because death is such a large struggle in life to begin with. It seems that death is what people fear most, and it surrounds us daily in our everyday lives. Using concepts dealing with death in stories helps make the characters more relatable to the common man.

Kristen R. 11-12 said...

To answer the first question, if I were the last of mankind I would first and foremost try to find more people. However, like Kristen said, there would eventually come a point when the seemingly hopeless search for more people would become tiring and unable to be pursued anymore. At that point I would carry on for as long as I could by myself until I was unable to do so. To answer the second question, I feel that authors use death as a main struggle because it is something that is a common theme to people in the real world; it is something that is extremely relatable in some way or another. It is a struggle that can parallel a common, frequent struggle in the real world because it is something that must continuously be dealt with. When an author is able to portray a theme that is truly able to be related to by many people, he or she is ultimately more successfull.

KatherineS13-14 said...

1) If I was one of the last of mankind, I would definitely try to find more people. To live alone with absolutely noone to talk to would be a terrible life to live. It would have no purpose. Trying to find other people would be the only purpose I would have for living, and I would try to do that.

Sydney C.13-14 said...

1. I would be very careful in the process of finding others if it were a scene such as the end of the world. I know I would not be able to trust everyone so I would need to spy out and make sure the people were friendly before I chose to interact. In the mans position I may want to find others because I would be afraid of what would happen to the boy after I was gone.

2. Death is a universal concept that everyone has their own opinion on. Everyone knows someone that has died and most have thought about what waits upon them after death as well. This is why the theme of death in the novel is something we as readers can connect with while the last survivors must overcome it.

russell F 11-12 said...

2. because they are the only people on earth and death is what happens during an apocalypse.

Eric Y 13-14 said...

For question one, I would definitely try to last as long as possible while trying to find other people as well.

For two, I believe death is the main struggle because it is one of the inevitable events that will occur in life so everyone can relate.

Dana G. 13-14 said...

1)I think that I would not take the "easy way out"and kill myself, but search for other sane people.