Authority In The Short Story Antaeus, By Borden Bear

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Renowned psychologist and social experimenter Stanley Milgram once said that “obedience is the psychological mechanism that links individual action to political purpose. It is the dispositional cement that binds men to systems of authority.” In other words, man succumbs to authority because it is rooted in his obedience to jurisdiction. An example of this is the American judicial system, which man is obedient to because that is what’s known. His political or societal purpose however is a learned behavior, or one that he matriculates from the dynamic of his culture. In the short story “Antaeus” the author, Borden Deal, explores the idea of authority through his character T.J. In“Antaeus”, Borden Deal uses the characterization of T.J. to render that when man is unique and is separate from social norms he will have the determination to find a purpose in society, only to be overcome by the presence of authority causing the destruction of his fortitude. Because T.J. is divergent from from society’s expectations, he attracts a social following from his peers. T.J. is a southern boy that moves to a northern city with his parents. The setting of the story is placed in a time of economic unprosperity, so times are tough. While he gets acquainted to his new life, T.J. meets other people his age who call…show more content…
This determination is short-lived, however, because of the inevitable force of jurisdiction over man. The dynamic of authority is observed, noting that T.J’s differences, such as his voice, eventually leads to the carnage of his determination. When man’s uniqueness and individuality are suppressed and forced to be hidden, one can not strive. As Stanley Milgram said, obedience binds humans and authority together, and as soon as that bond breaks, regaining that fetter is more important that the prosperousness of

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