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The pre-persons

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Philip K. Dick: The Pre-Persons 1987 1 The subject of abortion has been debated in almost every country of the world, and one of the questions it brings to discussion is "how should we define humanity?" Being able to survive outside the wound of your mother is one of the things that defines being human, but also the possession of a soul is thought to define humanity. Many ethical stands can be taken on this subject, and the short story "The Pre-Persons" takes one. "The Pre-Persons" also illustrates the free right and the importance of individual pursuits. It is also the individuality of the post-modern world the article "Will you be lonesome tonight" debates, and taking this and Picture 1 into perspective, I will analyze and interpret the opinions of how the post-modern world defines humankind. The narrative in the extract from the short story "The Pre-Persons" starts in the middle, in medias res. A third person narrator whose point of view lies with the main character tells it. This means that not only do we follow the main character physically; we also get an indirect characterization of him by hearing about his thoughts and feelings. Particularly this is important to notice, because his feelings throughout the story give the reader a good understanding of the plot and problematic of the story. ...read more.


It's a certain kind of woman advocating this all. They used to call them 'castrating females'." (Lines 115-118) Dick imagines that abortion is legal until the soul enters the body. The soul enters the body when one has the reasoning ability to do simple algebra. Everyone sees it as a fair rule expect Walter, who cannot see what simple algebra and age have to do with having a soul: "If I have a soul now like the law says, then I had a soul then, or else we have no souls... " (page 4 lines 59-60) By letting Walter be reflective and actually the cleverest and most reasonable in the story, Dick illustrates that a child sometimes can be as thoughtful and versatile as any adult can be. In the story, Dick also speaks ironically of the mentality of the American people: "... If only I don't know they suck the air out of the lungs of the kids they have there, he thought. Destroy them that way. Why? Cheaper, dad had said. Saves the taxpayers' money." (Lines 74-76) He shows the impersonal, liberal and capitalistic way of thinking. Nor when Walter's mother wants to have an abortion with a new child is it emotional questions that comes into her mind, but it is about doing what is in and ...read more.


human nature is believed to be invariant over long periods of time and across different cultural contexts, it is debatable what a human being needs in order to feel fulfilled. In the poem "It ain't what you do it's what it does to you" the view on human nature is that what matters to a person is to find comfort in what you do. One has to follow his/her own path and not follow the footsteps of others. The free right is free so that you can use it for something that does it for you and not just because it is the in thing to do as in the "The Pre-Persons". Another important aspect for a human being, if you ask Simon Armitage, is love and feeling for what you do. Human beings need to get that feeling, spiritual ballast, about something or someone otherwise life is not worth living: "His own mother frightened him. The cold and opaque eyes mirrored nothing, no soul inside, and he thought, it's you who don't have a soul, you and your skinny messages not-to-be." In the story, "The Pre-Persons" the capitalism has taken over the soul, and only the child Walter sees the danger of it. ?? ?? ?? ?? English Essay 01-05-2008 Louise Dalsgaard Side 1 af 3 SG - 3.L ...read more.

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