The Winter Of Our Discontent Essay example

1242 Words Nov 17th, 2016 5 Pages
Mandy Hale once said, “[s]elf-worth is so vital to your happiness”. Often, individuals with low self-esteem can achieve contentment by gaining a sense of self-worth. The main characters, Ethan Hawley, from The Winter of Our Discontent by John Steinbeck, and Charles Gaunt, from The Last Crossing by Guy Vanderhaeghe, both attain different levels of contentment during their journey to acquire a positive self-image. The protagonists recognize the causes of their low self-esteem, face obstacles, and achieve pleasure through their gain of self-worth.
To attain a sense of self-worth an individual must realize the causes of their low self-esteem. In The Winter of Our Discontent, Ethan Hawley understands that the biggest factors are his low social and economic status. Although Ethan comes from an aristocratic family, his father loses the family fortune, placing the family in a lower social class. Ethan “own[s] [a grocery] store right after the war” but accumulates debts, which later forces him to sell the store and become the first “Hawley [who] was ever a grocery clerk in a guinea grocery” (Steinbeck 14). The humiliation of working in a store he once owned causes Ethan to have low self-esteem. Ethan feels depressed that his failed investments have left him and his family in a bad condition, which negatively affects his mental outlook of himself.
In the case of Charles Gaunt, his father is the main cause of Charles low self-esteem. Growing up, Charles does not foster a loving…

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