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Heroism in the Falls

  • Date Submitted: 03/21/2014 04:14 AM
  • Flesch-Kincaid Score: 52.3 
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Heroism in The Falls
The Falls by George Saunders introduces itself in an odd manner, by putting the insecurities of one of its characters, Morse, on display. Morse is a man full of regret and anxiety, with story from his point of view being filled with fretting on things left undone and things left to do. The second point of view character, Cummings, is an egotistical, slightly delusional man, brimming with false confidence in himself and his skills as an artist. The Falls is a story about two very different men, and their actions when confronted with a difficult decision.
Morse is most surely unsure of himself in all respects, the best example of this being his encounter with Cummings. His initial reaction upon seeing Cummings is to hope Cummings does not “collar” him. Upon successfully evading “collaring” he reconsiders and becomes concerned that Cummings, who he himself described as “an odd duck, who though nearly forty, still lived with his mother” may not like him, and even goes so far to wonder if he had done anything to offend Cummings. A man he had in a prior thought, earnestly hoped would not speak with him. He goes on to express his displeasure with his life and reflect on his dreams and ambitions as a young man and where it all went wrong.
On the other hand, Cummings feels “pleased” having snubbed Morse, a “member of the power elite”(178) by not speaking with him. Cummings is a different sort of sad. He is a slightly delusional man, and holds himself in the highest regard, constantly putting his impressive vocabulary on display for no other reason that to reassure himself of his intelligence.   He dreams of his pending literary fame, which rests solely on his genius put down on his little yellow note pad. If only he could remember to carry it.
These two contrasting characters make their forthcoming individual decisions regarding the soon to be disaster at the falls quite intriguing. On one hand, a man with very little confidence or respect for...


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