A Comparative Study Of Texts Exploring The Concept Of "Reinventions", Including Yann Martel's "Life Of Pi"

1874 words - 7 pages

REINVENTIONS ESSAY
Reinvention is a fluid concept in itself with its lack of definite interpretation and its inability to be precisely characterised. However through close study of three texts that revolve around reinventions, it has to some extent given shape to my understanding of the abstract concept. The hidden ingenuity behind Yann Martel's novel Life of Pi, Sandro Del-Prete's drawing Cosmic Wheels and W.T. Anderson's cover page of Reality Isn't What It Used To Be" has diverged my interpretation of reinventions from being a mere change with motivation to a complex idea with profound implications for humanity.Due to constant exposure in the texts, I have been influenced strongly by the post-modern interpretation of reinventions. All is flux and there are no certainties, apart from uncertainty and change, so this loss of absolutes evokes reinventions. Reality Isn't What It Used To Be uses contradictions with references to pop culture, such as the subtitle "Primitive Chic", to convey the high speed of reinvention that we are currently experiencing and the notion that nothing is perpetual. "Chic" refers to the latest trend, but by putting "primitive" in front of it, it creates an oxymoron that suggests the swiftness of change quickly deteriorates new things into the old; that nothing is forever. With this comes the idea of a fluid identity conveyed in Cosmic Wheels which feature sinuous ellipses that change dimensions to stress the continuous transformation of forms with an added air of irregularity and inevitability. As it is a circle, it is impossible to determine its starting dimension and true form. Likewise, it is equally difficult to pinpoint a static and true self behind the collection of socially reinvented masks which form one's identity.As post-modernism challenges us in new interpretations on life, reinventions also expose us to new ways of thinking. Reinventions can subvert accepted beliefs and introduce us to fresh ideology. In Life of Pi, Martel challenges the conventional and absolutist notion of truth and reality, and instead he puts forward the post-modern idea that truth is only a provisional perspective and reality a constructed tale about an experience. Pi's questioning, "Doesn't the telling of something always become a story? Isn't just looking upon this world already something of an invention? Doesn't that make life a story?" demonstrates that stories are representations of reality and it is impossible to determine unbiased reality because experience is always filtered, hence distorted, through someone's perspective. The complexity of identifying truth and reality is exemplified through the constructed nature of the novel; it is a mise-en-abyme told from the viewpoints of different narrators to show the ambiguities and slipperiness of language. Another example of reinvention subverting traditional beliefs is in Reality Isn't What It Used To Be, which confronts the reader by presenting an unique perspective on society and...

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