"A Cage Of Butterflies" Brian Caswell Socio Cultural Assumptions And Values Presented In The Book

914 words - 4 pages

In the novel “A Cage of Butterflies”, author Brian Caswell raises a number of socio-cultural values and assumptions. He does this through his characters’ thoughts and dialogue as he guides the reader through the story of seven adolescents, two young adults and the ‘Babies’ that they all love. This group of people live or work at ‘the farm’ – a place for young people with high IQ’s. Greg, Mikki and the other children are having an O.K. life at the farm, where they can all fit in despite their differences. But what about the five younger ‘Babies’? With the help of Susan and Erik, two employees at the farm, the mystery soon unfolds to reveal a presentation of human cruelty.This essay will address three of the socio-cultural values and assumptions that Caswell raises in the novel. These will be:The assumption that sameness is encouraged and differences are discouraged in today’s society, whether they are disabilities or extraordinary abilities.The ethics of human experimentation,And the powerlessness of children.The first socio-cultural assumption to be addressed in this essay is that differences are discouraged in our society, and that sameness is encouraged. Caswell’s beliefs about this point show through in the novel when Greg and Mikki are discussing how difficult the super-intelligent Babies’ lives must have been.“…we only had to deal with people’s ordinary, everyday prejudices. ‘Don’t be too clever.’ … ‘Don’t walk around on crutches dragging your legs behind you and making me feel uncomfortable.’ ‘Be normal. Be the same as me.’” (pg 117) Caswell seems to believe that people in today’s society are not accustomed to differences and would prefer everyone to be the same in order for themselves to be ‘comfortable’.However, when Greg says this, he is not actually quoting people, more so their thoughts, which suggests that people did not exclude him outright. These thoughts may, however, have placed a ‘barrier’ between Greg and other people, which he has obviously noticed. It is probably because of this barrier that Greg expresses earlier in the novel,“I guess that’s why most of us don’t mind it here. It’s a place where we don’t have to pretend to be anything but what we are.” (pg 9)Another point raised by Caswell in the novel is the ethics of experimentation. Caswell’s feelings about the ethics of human experimentation are shown throughout the novel, some examples being seen as Susan is arguing with Larsen about the use of Pentothal on the Babies. Caswell seems to speak through Susan in this case, and if this is true, his feelings are clear. During the argument Susan exclaims“Hell, man, these are children, not lab animals…” (pg...

Find Another Essay On "A Cage of Butterflies" Brian Caswell - Socio-Cultural Assumptions and Values presented in the book

"In the Time of the Butterflies" - A Story About Love

1193 words - 5 pages In the time of the Butterflies, by Julia Alverez, is a story about love. This story also reviels how the Mirabel sisters get involved in the revolution against Trujillo's politics and how they deal with their family and friends in the meanwhile. It is remarkable and catching story because it explains how these sisters achieve liberty throughout their union during a terrible reign where women have few rights and brave people are

The Historical Significance of Salt as Presented in the Book, Salt: A World History

641 words - 3 pages 1800 or so. There are also acknowledgements, a bibliography, and an index. The book has been presented in a way, such that it can be perceived as it is an informational book. The chapters are filled with historical stories and anecdotes of salt, as well as various recipes involving salt or salted products. One such recipe instructs the reader on how to make a Baked Spiced Ham. “Select a nicely cured ham. Soak overnight in cold water. Wipe off

In the Time of the Butterflies compare and contrast essay

818 words - 3 pages PAGE In the Time of the Butterflies EssayPolitical oppression can destroy not only a family's sense of independence and success but also a country's sense of independence and success. Unique strengths can be developed and can bring out the best and the worst of an individual amongst difficult and challenging times. Alvarez's organization and development of the historical fiction helps us better understand the Mirabel family's involvement in

Looking for Alibrandi by Brian Cassewell, This is a reveiw and reflection on each chapter of the book.

784 words - 3 pages Looking for Alibrandi Reflection journal and reviewCHAPTER 1Her name is Josephine Alibrandi she goes to a rich school called St Martha's where she is in year 12. In this chapter Josephine tells us about her problems at school and at home. At home she has to deal with her mother who is single and her grandmother who always tries to control her life. At the end of the chapter we find out that Josie's father has turned up at Sydney. Michael

Analyse the socio-economic, political, religious and cultural consequences of the Black Death

2646 words - 11 pages Analyse the socio-economic, political, religious and cultural consequences of the Black DeathThe Black Death was one of the deadliest pandemics in human history, with its effects peaking in Europe between 1347 and 1351. This essay examines the socio-economic, political and religious and cultural consequences of the Black Death, the worst plague the world had ever seen. The later Middle Ages, of course, are usually characterized by historians as

Personal, Cultural And Organizational Values In A Global Setting

1330 words - 5 pages unethical activities. Every company is touched by the global marketplace, but not every company realizes that fundamental differences in cultural assumptions and values become more magnified in a global setting. We no longer live in cultures that are self-sufficient. We have to rely on each other for the greater good of humanity. Globalization is the process whereby the world's people are becoming increasingly interconnected in all facets of their

A book report on They Cage The Animals At Night

689 words - 3 pages " Sal," I cried. " You came for me. You came for me."" Yes I did son." He hugged me tightly." Well, I'll be," Officer Daily said. " How did you know he'd be here?" Sal Laughed." I know my son," he said. He tried wiping some of the tears streaming down my face. These quotes came out of the end of the book called They Cage the Animals at Night By Jennings Michael Burch. It shows that Jennings had someone who cared about him a lot. Sal is always

Cultural Values in The Left Hand of Darkness, The Fellowship of the Ring, and Dune

1642 words - 7 pages people of one race or planet encounter people of a different race or from a different planet. Tolkien treats this issue in a 'specisitc' or physiological manner. The cultural misunderstandings and clashes that arise in The Fellowship of the Ring are due to the differing physiology of the characters. Herbert deals with cultural misunderstandings in an environmental manner. In Herbert's world, cultural values depend less on which species a

Erroneus Assumptions in The Trial and Death of Socrates

2336 words - 9 pages Erroneus Assumptions in The Trial and Death of Socrates In Plato's Crito, Socrates explains to his old friend Crito his reasons for refusing an offer to help him escape execution. One of the tools Socrates uses to convince Crito of the righteousness of his decision is a hypothetical argument concerning the state and laws of Athens. Central to this argument is the congeniality that Socrates had always found in Athens, reflected by the fact

The Effects of Socio-Cultural Factors on Individuals

730 words - 3 pages does not see one cent of his earnings because his mother feels it should be used for school clothes (880). Also, while in bed one night Dave recalls some of the beatings he received from his father throughout his life and thinks about how others treat him “like a mule” (886). The cultural belief that a gun is a symbol of power causes Dave to buy a gun in hopes of proving himself as a man and stopping the humiliations and abuses he receives; however, his problem, the killing of the mule, pushes him another step back from reaching his desire of being treated as a man because he feels even more humiliated after his accident.

In The Time Of The Butterflies

554 words - 2 pages The main point of Julia Alvarez’s "In the Time of the Butterflies" is to show individual personality in each character. This book shows that the people involved in the revolution led personal lives and had feelings just like those of us who read about them. By telling about the characters’ families and personal issues, Alvarez draws her readers into the book and makes them feel for each character. Something that puzzled me

Similar Essays

In The Australian Book, 'a Cage Of Butterflies', What Does The Author, Brian Caswell, Want To Tell The Reader About Being Different?

754 words - 3 pages In the novel, A Cage of Butterflies, by Brian Caswell, he explores many themes, the most important being the theme of 'being different. I believe that Brian Caswell is very passionate about this topic and that he wants to explore what being different and an individual really means. This topic is very relevant in today's society.Being drastically different is a burden because you will never be or feel accepted. Many of the kids at the Think-Tank

A Feature Film Analysis Of Values Presented By The Central Characters In "The Shawshank Redemption" And "The Hurricane"

1791 words - 7 pages and justice. Rubin an, African American, is also wrongly convicted of murder. The film traces his unjust and unequal treatment throughout his life. Both feature films use characterisation and film language in presenting the central characters either negatively or positively. This in turn, assists in the acceptance or rejection of values put forward by the characters. Both Andy and Rubin are characters presented in a positive light and thus

To Kill A Mockingbird How Is The Theme Of Prejudice And Discrimination Presented In The Book?

1649 words - 7 pages To Kill a Mockingbird is a novel revolved mainly around the events before, during, and after the trial of a black man, Tom Robinson, who was accused of raping Mayella Ewell, a white. As the summary in the book stated, "they (the children) begin to learn that life is not as straight-forward and as fair as it seemed through the eyes of their childhood...and how people react when they are forced to choose between their prejudices and what they know

"Only The Heart" By Brian Caswell And David Phu An Chiem Character Analysis "Linh"

613 words - 2 pages "Only the heart" is wonderful book written by Brian Caswell and David Phu An Chiem. This book paints an all so real picture of what it would be like in a Vietnamese refugee family. The book is set in character narrative, each chapter is told by a different voice. Although there were serval characters in this book, there were two main ones - Toan and Linh. I decided to do this character analysis on Linh, because out of all the characters, she was