Raymond Carver What We Talk About When We Talk About Love Analysis

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Register to read the introduction… I believe that the character with the most absurd idea of love is Mel. Mel is Terri’s second husband. He claims to only believe in spiritual love. In his past, Mel spent “five years in seminary.” This is obviously what he bases his idea upon. Mel declares that if he could go back in time, he would enjoy being a knight in armor to shield him from other people. This reveals to me that Mel is emotionally closed off and concealed from other people. Furthermore, as seen through his wife, Terri, Mel does not have the passion inside him that is necessary to experience love. The only love that Mel does experience is the love toward his children, but that is love in a different sense. Loving his children is a natural instinct. They are born into his care, and are made with his own blood. His love for them was not searched for. It just came to be when they were born. Mel’s relationship with Terri, or any other women that he may have encountered in the past is distant and indifferent as to who they are inside. Mel’s ideas toward love are absolutely foolish and …show more content…
All of these people seem to have a distorted view about what love is. Moreover, each one of their opinions seems to conflict with the others. I believe that Carver includes these conflicting ideas of love to illustrate to his readers a sense of urgency in finding a path in life. Carver shows through his characters that life is too short to spend any portion of it moving in the wrong direction. All four people at the table have been living their lives under different creeds concerning love. And all four have been living in a motionless fashion. For example, Nick and Laura both believe in physical love. Terri points out that their physical attraction will die with time. Also, Mel puts up a wall around his emotions toward people and seals himself off. He only believes in spiritual love. Poor Terri is married to Mel. She is just going down with the ship. Additionally, all four have been married once before. Obviously their ideas of love have already failed them at least once. At the end of the story, they all realize that they have been living either motionless, or simply just moving backwards. I think that Raymond Carver wants these fictitious characters to be an example for people to compare themselves to. Hopefully Carver’s story can help people move their lives in the right

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