Helen Farrell: A Narrative Essay

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As M.D. Helen Farrell analyzes, the relationship between Jack and his mother after their escape is a complicated one―: Jack 's belief system and knowledge of the world are turned upside down, while his mother strives to reclaim her own identity. Jack is forced to grapple with the concept of being a separate entity from his mother. Ma 's own conflicts in their new world prohibit her from providing Jack with much needed reassurance. Jack is trying to make sense of this new world and turns to his mother for answers; however, her answers often prove unsatisfactory to the boy. (47)

Viewing the novel as only a story of psychological trauma and suffering however would be too one-dimensional a view of it. Also something all major criticism on the novel has glossed over or has not delved
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Jack’s naivety thus serves as a perfect representation of a colonized person who does not realize the full extent and implications of his incarceration.

The novel is not only a narrative of captivity but simultaneously a narrative of resistance and subversion where we see characters not succumbing to their circumstances but overcoming them and managing to rise above them. We find characters reclaiming their identity and individuality and finding their own voice and perspective while debunking earlier preconceived notions about them which is an essential element of postcolonial literature.
In the sub-chapter ‘Corporeal Citizenship: Unruly Bodies and Closet Spaces in Emma Donoghue’s Room ’ Zarranz also asserts how despite being a captive the character of Ma is never portrayed as a passive sufferer and how even in her captivity she manages to protect her son from their captor. As she
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