Animal Dreams By Barbara Kingsolver

1295 Words6 Pages

The past is unchangeable, however what one chooses to do with their future determines their legacy. In the novel Animal Dreams by Barbara Kingsolver, the protagonist, Codi struggles to overcome her past experiences as she returns to her home town. Through Codi’s actions the question arises, “Does one’s past dictate their future?” Collectively cultures are focused on the present. They view the past as unalterable such as mourning the loss of someone will not bring them back to life. However one might say society is often caught up in the past. The well known catch phrase, “we learn from our mistakes,” has also been a basis for many individuals in achieving prosperity. In the novel the question about the impact of one’s past on their destiny …show more content…

For instance, as Mason began choking, Codi “stood behind his chair and pulled him up by the armpits, folded him over her left arm, and gave him four quick whacks between the shoulder blades.” (Kingsolver, 118) Even though Codi’s was never able to get her medical degree, she was able to dislodge the pinto bean out of the baby’s throat. Furthermore, rather than letting her terrible experiences in medical school become a burden, she is able to overcome her past and save the baby’s life. Secondly, Codi uses her miscarriage as a teaching experience for her class. She introduces the use of contraceptives, “it’s a piece of equipment with a practical purpose, like a...” (Kingsolver, 150) In the beginning, Codi was always avoiding situations that would bring back the memories of her miscarriage. Nonetheless, Codi’s willingness to introduce the unit of birth control into the school’s curriculum portrays her finally not letting the death of her child set her back. Finally the question is answered through Codi’s ability to conceive another child. As Codi climbs the hill with Viola she states, “I am pregnant.” (Kingsolver, 351) Even though this is a common phrase, Codi’s miscarriage made her willingness to become pregnant less likely. However, despite her past and the emotional tear the death of a child leaves, at the end of the novel Codi is able to persevere and become pregnant with Loyd’s child once again. Thus, not impacting her ability to have a family of her

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