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The Beast in the Jungle Essay | Critical Essay #2

This Study Guide consists of approximately 60 pages of chapter summaries, quotes, character analysis, themes, and more - everything you need to sharpen your knowledge of The Beast in the Jungle.
This section contains 1,890 words
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Critical Essay #2

In the following excerpt, Bell looks at "The Beast in the Jungle" as a "dark fable" and examines its treatment of passivity and fate.

"The Beast in the Jungle" may be James's most extreme expression of the theme of human character as potentiality which cannot or will not move out into the world of action, of plot. Published in 1903, the same year as The Ambassadors, it bears, as will be seen, a certain relation to that novel, which arises, in a much more complicated way, from the idea of the failure to "live." But the short story is a dark fable, more abstract and pessimistic than the novel. Marcher (whose name differs from hers only by an initial letter) is the farthest James would ever go in illustrating the consequences of Isabel Archer's cult of Being; but where she is heroic in resisting the reductive expectations of others...

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This section contains 1,890 words
(approx. 7 pages at 300 words per page)
Purchase our The Beast in the Jungle Study Guide
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The Beast in the Jungle from BookRags and Gale's For Students Series. ©2005-2006 Thomson Gale, a part of the Thomson Corporation. All rights reserved.
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