The Perks Of Being A Wallflower Essay

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Stephen Chbosky’s The Perks of Being a Wallflower is a coming of age novel that was first published in 1999. After five years of having random ideas such as “a boy standing in a tunnel”, a girl he likes, and parties he goes, the author began to write the novel when he was facing difficult times in his life. Set in the 1990s, the novel follows Charlie through his first year of high school where he faces challenges many teenagers may experience, including drugs and alcohol, sex, love, depression, homosexuality, and just feeling like you don’t belong. Chbosky has stated in interviews that he wrote the book as “a blueprint for survival... for people who have been through terrible things and need hope and support.” Perks was intended to be an unparalleled…show more content…
However, Chbosky tackles these subjects in an unapologetically honest way through the unique perspective of the sheltered main character. Most of the debates have centered around the novel’s theme of sex. The most disputed scene is the two pages where Charlie witnesses date rape at his brother’s party. He describes in detail the events that took place, and how he didn’t fully understand at first that he was witnessing rape because of how normal it seemed. This all furthers Chbosky’s message that rape doesn’t always happen in a dark alley with a hooded figure like it does in the movies, that sometimes it can happen between people who appear to be in love. Other instances include when Charlie walked in on his sister and her boyfriend having sex, when he watches his friend hook up with numerous men, and when he remembers that he was molested by his aunt as a child. Each of these situations are explained in detail, not sensitizing any of them in the least. These instances have caused many people to deem the entire book as inappropriate and even borderline
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