Growing Pains In Cormac Mccarthy's All The Pretty Horses

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Growing Pains
Everybody grows up, but some people do so earlier than others. This depends on what people experience in their lives, relative to what occurs around them. In Cormac McCarthy’s All the Pretty Horses, the protagonist John Grady Cole starts off feeling out of place in the world, lacking an answer as to why it is changing and why he should accept this coming change. This feeling of helplessness prompts him into leaving his home in America in search of a place where he belongs in Mexico. Although he starts his adventure easygoing and naive, Cole's journey is one that leads him from innocence to maturity in his search for a personal haven, suggesting that one’s development and growth stem from new experiences.
As the environment and society around him are changing, Cole remains steadfast in his unwillingness to give up the past, emphasizing his naiveté and innocence. The world is coming face to face with modernization and cowboys and ranchers like him are starting to lose their place in the world. His thoughts reveal this attitude when he watches his mother’s play at the theatre. “He'd the notion that there would be
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Later on, they travel back to America, just as Cole is preparing to leave once again when Rawlins tells him, “This is still good country.” In response, Cole says, “Yeah. I know it is. But it ain’t my country” (250). The tone is decisive and resolute. By calling it a “good country,” Rawlins still makes a point to say that there is more to be experienced by staying. However, when Cole says “it ain’t my country,” he emphasizes the fact that he has lost all connections to his old home. His father is dead and the workers at his family’s ranch, who were the last connection to the past he was so attracted to, are gone as well. Even though Cole has not found exactly what he is looking for, he has a better idea now and will keep searching until he finds
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