• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

Obsession is a major theme in the novel Enduring Love by Ian McEwan

Extracts from this document...


OBSESSION It doesn't seem to be about sex. It's an obsession. He's completely fixated on me. He doesn't think about anything else. Meaning: Obsession is a strong idea or feeling that controls some ones behaviour. Obsession is a major theme in the novel 'Enduring Love' by Ian McEwan. This is seen throughout the entire novel through Joe, Clarissa and Parry. Without the sense of obsession in this book, it would be extremely boring and not many people would want to buy or read it. Joe is sickened by Parry's love for him and Clarissa finds Joe to be insane and saying Parry is a figure of his imagination. This finally brings Clarissa to leave Joe and for Joe to go and shoot Parry. Jed Parry's obsession with Joe is the most important and the longest and most drastic obsession story in the novel. From Jed following Joe to the library, to the flowers on the bench as Joe runs outside into the square after him. To all of the missed calls on the answering machine and all of the hours standing outside of the window quietly and patiently waiting for Joe to admit that he loves Parry as much as he loves Joe. ...read more.


This causes Clarissa to feel a little guilty about the whole matter because she insisted that Joe was delusional and had lost his mind, and that causes her to think about going back to Joe. I drove to Camden Town to collect Clarissa. She must have been looking out for my car, for as soon as I parked she appeared at the top of the steps outside her brother's flat. Joe has many obsessions throughout the novel, including science, Parry and Clarissa. Joe's obsession with Parry is fairly large in the book. Joe's feelings towards this are good, bad and somewhat neutral. The good feelings are that there is someone there that is in love with him beside the love of his life, Clarissa and that causes him to feel as though he is important and that he is definitely wanted in this world. The bad feelings are that Joe feels threatened and frightened and he feels as though his life could be in danger and that he is driving Clarissa insane everyday that goes past and every second of those days. ...read more.


Clarissa and Joe have frequent talks about him becoming a scientist again and they always end with him promising that he agrees that there is no more of a chance of getting back into science. The final obsession that Joe has is that of what happened with the balloon incident. This causes Joe to revisit the site of the accident (Chapter 15) and reflect on the differences and the things that are exactly the same as the first time that they were there and most of all, Logan's death. Joe cannot admit that he was the first to let go (of the rope) and that causes him to distrust himself and to disbelieve himself about the incident and makes him think of ways that they could have done things better to make it all effective and proper. This all (above) shows how obsession is a theme in Enduring Love by Ian McEwan. It also shows how people can have so many obsessions or fascinations within a short time period that could make or break them or change their lives. This therefore shows that everyone can be guilty of having an obsession such as Joe, Parry and Clarissa do in this novel. ?? ?? ?? ?? 1 Nicholas Kinnaird Yr 11T JHA 11IB ENGLISH ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our GCSE Ian McEwan section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related GCSE Ian McEwan essays

  1. Explore the waysin which McEwan presents obsession in Enduring Love

    'Hunger' and 'desperation' give the reader a sense of the insatiable passion that Jed feels for Joe.

  2. Enduring Love Essay.

    The end result is that a man; John Logan, died in his attempts to save a young boy who was trapped in the hot air balloon basket. Joe's life from this point onwards begins to change dramatically, not only from the shock of the accident, but also because of unpredictable

  1. Time is a major theme in Ian McEwan's 'The Child In Time'.

    'But time...monomaniacally forbids second chances.' No-one can ever manipulate time, it is not an 'independent entity.'- Rebecca Goldstein. It is not something to use, but something to work around, a part of life. Stephen also describes part of his depression as 'empty time' probably because there is noting to fill it but his daydreams.

  2. Enduring Love - by Ian McKewen - Discuss the changing relationship between Clarissa and ...

    Jed now begins to stalk Joe even more and become obsessed with him. He's writing letters to Joe and is waiting outside his house on a regular basis. In turn Joe becomes obsessed with Jed's obsession with him. He does research into the way Jed behaves, spends all his time

  1. Evident throughout the entire plot of 'Enduring Love', Ian McEwan fuses three different genres: ...

    Successfully bridging genres discreetly in earlier chapters, it isn't always evident to the reader that McEwan has changed from one genre to another as he often combines them elegantly without the reader being aware of this change. This is explicit when Joe is trying to find out from Jed what

  2. McEwan, 'Enduring Love' - What does the novel have to say about love?

    Clarissa still believes Joe has partly caused the situation himself, and moves out completely. There seems to be little hope for Joe and Clarissa as the novel draws to a close. When Joe collects Clarissa for their meeting with Jean Logan in Chapter twenty-four, he feels "a sudden ache...

  1. Explore the ways in which Mc Ewan presents obsession in Enduring love.

    Mc Ewan uses many techniques to present these characters obsessions. One of the ways he does this is by giving the characters a chance to narrate, this may be to show the reader how they cope with telling a story.

  2. Many people believe that when reading a book written in first person narrative, it ...

    By knowing the ending, he can embellish parts of the story where he feels it appropriate and also where he considers it would make the account more interesting for the reader. Knowing this, it is hard for the reader to completely believe all that has been written.

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work