Doc Ricketts In John Steinbeck's Cannery Row

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Everyone’s role in society varies depending on their profession and their community. In Steinbeck’s Cannery Row, each member brings their own value to their ecosystem. Doc Ricketts, the marine biologist., is one of the many people who showcases another side to Cannery Row and the other members of the system. Doc Ricketts is perceived differently in a general society where he would be seen the complete opposite from Steinbeck’s view of Doc being perfect. In a general society, Doc would be seen as short-tempered, a liar, in other words, imperfect. No one is immaculate, not even Doc despite the many characteristics he possesses that others would consider to deem him flawless. Doc has his weaknesses; flaws that most people in a general society…show more content…
Every member of Cannery Row is unable to consider that Doc has any flaws. They consider him a man that can do no wrong and is flawless because of that. He’s the one that “everyone in the Row came to...for medical advice” even though he isn’t even allowed to practice medicine (Steinbeck 93). He was led into the role by the people and just accepted it because he’s that kind of man. He adapted to the role given to him and gave advice to whoever asked for it. He’s basically the reason in Cannery Row because he thinks everything through with logic and can come up with solutions easily when faced with a problem given to him by his community. He judges the personality of the people in his town and uses that to come up with solutions like with Mack after Doc beat him up. Doc listened to what Mack had to say and was patient as Mack went on to announce how him and the boys would pay for the expenses only for Doc to come to the conclusion that Mack wouldn’t do it (Steinbeck 125). Similarly, when Doc was faced with the dilemma of another party being thrown in his honor by the whole town because of everything that he’s down for the community, he acknowledges that he’ll have to accommodate for it, thataway it will go off without a hitch (Steinbeck 160). In both cases, Doc uses reason in each situation to come up with the best solution for what he is expected to face when Mack and the boys are involved as well as other members of the community because usually he’s the one that always gives to the community without asking for anything in return. His willingness to solve his town’s problems when they are bestowed upon him are what makes the community of Cannery Row consider him to be

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