A Criticism of “The Swimmer” Essay
As the story begins, Neddy is …show more content…
Cheever’s character also possesses a quality that makes him like most men of his stature. It was not enough to have money, family, and friends. Neddy Merrill wanted more and had a “modest idea of himself as a legendary figure”(Baym, 2410). The idea of a man of any time period wishing himself to have a legacy is not an odd theme to either life or literature. It is also interesting here that Neddy does not have a son, only four daughters. This may be important as there is no heir to Neddy’s fortune, so whatever was to be remembered of the Merrill name had to be undertaken by him. So unfolds the metaphorical and mystical swim.
As Neddy begins his swim, he feels empowered and felt “he was a pilgrim, an explorer, a man with a destiny” (Baym, 2410). His need to take an uncommon route is what led him to this idea of himself and the route did prove to be most uncommon. As he continues on, the passage of time seems to confuse him, as does the changing of seasons. As he plows on toward his destiny he “was laughed at, jeered at, a beer can was thrown at him, and he had no dignity or humor to bring to the situation” (Baym, 2413). So is the metaphor for a man with