The Secret Life of Walter Mitty Essay

678 Words Mar 20th, 2013 3 Pages
The Secret Life of Walter Mitty
Cadina Odum
Mary Lounsbury
March 17, 2013

The Secret Life of Walter Mitty

“The Secret Life of Walter Mitty” (Thurber, 1939) is a short story by James Thurber. The most famous of Thurber’s stories, it first appeared in The New Yorker on March 18, 1939. This short story deals with a vague and mild-mannered man who drives into Waterbury, Connecticut and his wife for their regular weekly shopping and his wife’s visit to the beauty parlor. During this time he has five heroic daydream episodes, ranging from being a pilot in the U.S. Navy flying boat to being on a secret suicide mission to bomb an ammunition dump. In the following paragraphs I will tell why this story captured my interest,
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I believe the analytical approach that works for this story is Reader-Response. This is when you find a personal link or imaginative entry into a story, poem or play. For me the following passage is where I find an imaginative entry into this story, “Not so fast! You’re driving too fast!” said Mrs. Mitty. “What are you driving so fast for?” “Hmm?” said Walter Mitty. He looked at his wife, in the seat beside him, with shocked astonishment. She seemed grossly unfamiliar, like a strange woman who had yelled at him in a crowd. “You were up to fifty-five,” she said. “You know I don’t like to go more than forty. You were up to fifty-five.” Walter Mitty drove on toward Waterbury in silence, the roaring of the SN202 through the worst storm in twenty years of Navy flying fading in the remote, intimate airways of his mind. “You’re tensed up again,” said Mrs. Mitty. “It’s one of your days. I wish you’d let Dr. Renshaw look you over” (1939). This draws me in personally as I can see myself and my husband having a similar conversation and because of that I am drawn in on a personal level, but I am also drawn in on an imaginative level as well because I can visualize this scene happening in my head because of the wording and the way it is written. Another good example of this is from the article written by Ira Berkow when he says “Is this what they'll be proud to tell their grandchildren?

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