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Looking Backward: 2000-1887 Essay | Critical Essay #2

This Study Guide consists of approximately 98 pages of chapter summaries, quotes, character analysis, themes, and more - everything you need to sharpen your knowledge of Looking Backward.
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Critical Essay #2

In the following essay, McClay discusses the setting of Bellamy's utopian Boston, with an emphasis on martial and economic themes.

Given the connection Bellamy made between martial valor and solidarity, it is of considerable importance that the story of Looking Backward opens in Boston on Decoration Day, the holiday honoring the memory of Northerners who fell in the Civil War. Julian West, the protagonist-narrator, has paid his respects at the Mount Auburn grave of his fiancée's brother, who had been killed in the war, and has returned to dine that evening with his fiancée, Edith, and her upper-crust family, the Bartletts. We soon discern that Julian is a deeply troubled man. Some of his plaints stem from the disordered state of the times, which were marked by increasing class division, accelerating social tension, and labor agitation and strikes. Not that the well-insulated Mr. West...

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This section contains 2,929 words
(approx. 10 pages at 300 words per page)
Purchase our Looking Backward: 2000-1887 Study Guide
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Looking Backward: 2000-1887 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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