Self Reliance In Secret Life Of Bees

Decent Essays
Self-Reliance vs. Fellowship In the novels The Secret Life of Bees by Sue Monk Kidd and The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins, main characters initially attempt to solve all of their problems on their own. In The Secret Life of Bees, Lily Owens attempts to start a new life by herself but soon begins to depend on the Boatwright sisters to help her escape her father and the torture of living with him. In The Hunger Games, Katniss attempts to survive on her own in the dangerous arena but decides to help Peeta survive, not because she needs to but because she wants to help Peeta as Peeta had saved her life. This partnership between Katniss and Peeta creates a partnership between the two where they rely on each other rather than just themselves. …show more content…
Throughout The Secret Life of Bees, Lily Owens continuously works to escape from her cruel father, T. Ray. Initially, Lily runs away on her own then travels with Rosaleen to the town where she believes she can find the truth about her mother, who was killed when Lily was young. When Lily arrives, she wishes to live on her own with Rosaleen and searches for information on her mother. Lily soon finds that, alone with Rosaleen and starving, she cannot depend only on herself but must seek the help of others. Lily travels to the honey farm that her mother’s seemingly random black Mary photo came from, then tells the farmers there a false story about herself to get a job on the honey farm with Rosaleen. Lily stays with the Boatwright sisters who run the farm and are all black women. They eventually become like family to her. When Lily is saddened, hungry, or in need of almost anything, they help her, and when the sisters need help, Lily helps them. This causes life to go well for all of …show more content…
According to Maxine Harley, M.Sc. in psychotherapy, self reliance is fueled by the idea that “you are the only one who will never leave you, so you might as well be sure that you can at least rely upon yourself” (Harley). This idea directly applies to both novels. In The Secret Life of Bees, Lily lost her mother and is scared that she will lose Rosaleen or the Boatwright sisters. Lily has no sense of security, so she resists depending on others by doing everything herself and trusting no one. In The Hunger Games, Katniss faces a similar situation. Katniss lost her father and could not look to her mother or anyone else to bring her family food. Katniss tries to do everything herself because she doesn’t want to be hopeless if there is no-one to help her. Katniss doesn’t want to be endangered by someone else’s decision, causing her to decide to attempt to accomplish all of her goals herself. When in The Hunger Games, she repeats this behavior. Katniss is scared of having allies, as she is afraid to trust anyone and knows that she is the only one who can never leave her. Although these novels show the theme that the individual cannot do everything themselves, they also show that some self reliance is necessary. This follows another of Maxine Harley’s ideas, the idea that “We live in a 'something for nothing culture' nowadays that relies upon the goodwill,

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