- Discover essay samples

The American

4.9 of 5.0 (112 reviews)

505 words

The American Page 1
The American Page 2
The above thumbnails are of reduced quality. To view the work in full quality, click download.

The American

A literary technique that authors often times employ is giving to the characters a name to enhance the reader's understanding of that character. In The American, Henry James uses this style with most of his characters' names. Often times, the names may translate into an English word, or it could even just sound like an English word. The novel is better understood because of this and the reader can get more meaning out of each character and his or her personality traits. In whichever way James chooses to depict names, they intensify the reader's comprehension.

The main character, Christopher Newman, is a prime example of Henry James' use of this method. He is named after Christopher Columbus, the discoverer of America, as he says early in the novel, "Did you ever hear of Christopher Columbus?'my parents named me for him." (6). This is just relating him ever more to America and distinguishing him from a European. His last name "Newman" is very symbolic. He has traveled to Europe and Paris to basically become a "new man." He has given up his previous life of business and hard work, and is determined to live carefree and abroad. Newman changes day by day, and the reader follows along with these changes.

The name Claire de Cintr? also enhances the reader's knowledge of her as a person. "Claire" in French means "light" and "Cintr?" often can be translated as "crazy" or "insane." Claire is a light in many ways. She always wears white clothing, which can be very bright and seems to almost emit a glow when she is in a room. Her personality is also very lightening. She is well liked among everyone the reader is introduced to and always seems to attract the attention of people when she is in the room. Newman says, "'if you are going into a room with Madame de Cintr?, you needn't be afraid of being noticed yourself!" (139). Claire also can be seen by the reader to be a bit "crazy." She puts on a grand fa?ade to those around her, but she can be different. She seems to be very depressed behind the happy face that she puts on. Nobody will really speak of why her previous marriage was such a disaster, and this may be the cause of her depression. The reader can also assume that living with a mother and brother as the Marquise de Bellegarde and Urbain could drive any sane person a bit mad. All in all, Claire de Cintr? is a very fitting name.

There is also a deeper meaning behind Urbain de Bellegarde's name. "Urbain" can be translated just as it sounds ' to "urban." To many, urban life is often very distant and detached. This is just how Urbain Bellegarde is. He is a polite man, as is noted over and over by James. He is, however, not a very likeable man. His own wife, Madame de Bellegarde, ...

You are currently seeing 50% of this paper.

You're seeing 505 words of 1009.

Keywords: the american international school of vilnius, the american redwood zinfandel, the american roommate experiment, the american psycho, the american university of paris, the american horror story, the american conservative, the americans imdb

Similar essays

Portrait of the Artist as a Yo

ung Man Stephen Dedalus is born of a woman, created of the earth; pure in his childhood innocence. From this beginning stems the birth of an artist, and from this the novel, A ung Man, James Joyce recounts Stephen's story. His journey is followed from childhood to maturity, and thus his transformation from secular to saintly to an awakenin...

205 reviews
A Separate Peace, Detailed Ana

Dealing with enemies has been a problem ever since the beginning of time. In A Separate Peace by John Knowels, the value of dealing with your feelings and dealing with your enemies is shown by Gene Forester, a student in Devon during World War 2 dealing with few human enemies, but his emotions create a nemesis far greater than any human enemy. "I...

122 reviews

We convince ourselves that life wil be better after we get married, have a baby, then another. Then we are frustrated that the kids are?nt old enough and well be more contnt when they are. After that, we?re frustrated that we have teenagers to deal with. We tell ourselves that our life will be complete when our spouse gets he or...

123 reviews

'' by D. H. Lawrence The poem , by D. H. Lawrence describes his memories of childhood. Hearing a woman singing takes him to the time when his mother played piano on Sunday evenings. In the present, this woman is singing and playing the piano with great passion. However, the passionate music is not effecting him, because he can only th...

40 reviews
The Perfect Picture

Paper One In the essay "" by James Alexander Thom, a grandfather accidentally backs his truck over his baby granddaughter while trying to even out the "good dirt" for the garden (Thom 46). A local journalist see's the cops, ambulance, and all the commotion going on in the front yard. He decides what ever is going on over there would probably make...

106 reviews
Atsisiųsti šį darbą