Count Us In Analysis

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When established, overcoming narratives can manifest themselves in various ways. In Simon’s text, the root of the overcoming narrative lies in Beth’s relationship to the theory of self-determination. As previously mentioned, Beth, as a character, remains static in her development; in fact, with the narrative model that Rachel presents, Beth isn’t actively overcoming anything in the span of the text, but has already overcome the impediments which have plagued her. It is Rachel who is grappling with her sister’s behavior and, consequently, the ideals of self-determination Beth lives by. Rachel eventually finds security in this theory, insisting that “Beth is living by her own choices” and that “she is, in many ways, the embodiment of self-determination”…show more content…
This harmful case is not a mainstay of such narratives, though, as can be seen through an analysis of how a much more nuanced overcoming narrative is established in Kingsley and Levitz’s Count Us In.
While Count Us In also operates through the guise of an overcoming narrative, Kingsley and Levitz’s desire to establish their efficacy as members of society is what ultimately drives this construction. Of course, mediation is also present in this implementation, specifically in the social values that have been instilled in both Jason and Mitchell regarding a certain responsibility they have as individuals with Down syndrome. For example, after Jason expresses that he wishes people will “learn that people with Down syndrome can share the same feelings as disabled and nondisabled kids,” Mitchell asserts that he thinks they should name their book “The Successful Story of Having Down Syndrome” (Kingsley 10-11). From this excerpt, it becomes apparent that Jason and Mitchell’s creation of this text is entrenched in the belief they have a responsibility to demonstrate their ability to overcome, making it entirely possible that they have shaped its content to fulfill such a
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In short, there is no shortage of authorial intervention present in the texts discussed in this analysis. Their organizational structures and omitted sections make them both unreliable texts. Thus, when an audience approaches them, what can they trust? When it comes to Riding the Bus with my Sister, the options are far and few between. The flashbacks within the text have been shaped by Simon for the sake of the overcoming narrative she is attempting to achieve, and the image of her sister she is trying to portray negates the trauma she may have experienced, and possibly still experiences. The one space where Beth is truthfully portrayed, it seems, is through her own written words. Nearing the end of the text, Beth gifts Rachel with a “fake-leather scrapbook, with wide laminated pages and a stack of refills,” intended for the preservation of Rachel’s memories; when opening this present, Rachel “[opens] the book and [slips] in [Beth’s] letter” (Simon 318). In a text where most of the archival work is assumed to be done through the memories of other family members, the active preservation of written letters from Beth is invaluable. When Rachel quotes a letter from Beth that reads, “I wAnt To live. on my Own” or “I want
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