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Grendel And The Sympathizer: A Character Analysis

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Both Grendel in Grendel and The Captain in The Sympathizer are conflicted in their own ideas as society’s influence on their beliefs corrupts and alters their mentalities. They find themselves in situations in which they cannot choose between themselves and the world. Although both characters are fundamentally different from others in each respective story because of their unique dual natures, they cannot escape the clutching forces of assimilation to the expectations of the world and society. Grendel and The Captain are able to create their own foundations in their own beliefs, but they are challenged in life through the exposure to the world and its expectations. The major problem explored throughout Grendel and The Sympathizer revolves around how each of…show more content…
Grendel is a being of which can recognize, understand, and interpret the world along with the animals surrounding him. Grendel is immediately described as a unique being in Grendel because of this ability of sentience until the humans are introduced into the story. It is important to understand that Grendel is conscious of his own awareness and believes himself that he is not another monster existing purely to wreak havoc: “I alone exist. All the rest, I saw, is merely what pushes me, or what I push against” (Gardner 22). Grendel adopts the ideas of Solipsism early in his life, which is quite intriguing as Grendel experiences the world in a cognitive manner. This ideology gained in this process of interpretation shows In The Sympathizer The Captain is faced with similar situations to Grendel. The Captain is bifurcated by nature. He is both Vietnamese and Caucasian. He is both a communist while fighting with the democrats. Yet, The Captain is able to reside in the fact that he is a single “man of two faces” (Nguyen 1). The Captain seems to not have many qualms of
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