Analysis Of ' By Sherwood Anderson Essay

1401 Words May 26th, 2016 6 Pages
In Winesburg, Ohio, Sherwood Anderson emphasizes the idea that past events define the lives of many characters by the means in which they allow the events to influence their present attitudes and values. The characters Wing Biddlebaum, Wash Williams, and Louise Bentley dwell on thoughts of their past, which allow the effects the incidents had on them seep into their everyday lives and relationships with other characters throughout the story. In the short story “Hands”, society’s misinterpretation of Wing Biddlebaum as a perverted teacher forces him to leave his old life and suppress the way he displays his affection while teaching. As a result, Wing ultimately forces himself to stay in a state of isolation in his new community as he interprets his own hands as the grotesque feature in his life. Additionally, the character Wash Williams, from the short story “Respectability”, allows his past memories of his mother-in-law’s disturbing actions to influence his view of all women. His character further functions as a means by which Anderson expresses his underlying idea that the past influences a character’s life in the most extreme and grotesque ways. Furthermore, the short story, “Surrender”, reveals Louise Bentley’s futile search for love during her childhood and it’s direct hindrance on her ability to show affection in her present relationships, especially with her son David.
Wing Biddlebaum’s misunderstood past in his old town negatively affects the manner in which he…

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