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Analysis Of Joy Williams' Save The Whales, Screw The Shrimp

909 words - 4 pages

Analysis of Joy Williams' Save the Whales, Screw the Shrimp

Save the Whales, Screw the Shrimp is an essay written by Joy Williams, about the overwhelming complacency that todays culture shows towards nature.Williams argues in a very satirical way, that todays culture has all but completely lost touch with what nature really is, and that unless we as a nation change our morals regarding the role that nature plays in human existence, we may very well be witnessing the dawn of our own destruction.

An Evaluation of: Save the Whales, Screw the Shrimp

Williams is very satirical in the presentation of her topic, and the way that she addresses the reader from the very first paragraph is very interesting inasmuch as she is almost offensive with her gestures. This served it's purpose well as an attention getter or hook, but it was a little over done to the point of being unecessarily redundant. If the author's intention was to seem obsessively passionate about her topic then she did a wonderful job, but if her aim was to provide helpful information regarding the seriousness of her percieved problem, then she may have offended some of the readers that would have benefited most from understanding her point of view. Also the reader gets the impression from the authors voice that she is very pessimistic about the future, almost as if she has given up and is simply lashing out in anger at the percieved harbingers of this atrocity.

She starts by bringing a pessimistic view to photographs of nature, by describing what may or may not lie just outside the boundaries of the picture. Mockingly she leads the reader to assume that there are no real nature photos left in the world, but rather only digitaly enhanced photos of nature with the man-made things cropped out intentionally. It?s as though Williams has just a hint of conspiracy theorist dwelling in her writing.

Although many would agree that Williams has a very good point, her writing style belies conflict even in her own views. For instance, she attempts to use her satire as a way of shocking the reader into feeling her personal pain regarding the issue. However, if she truly felt as strongly as she would lead one to believe, then it stands to reason that she would much rather have written an essay which touched personal points in the lives of those who are percived to be the overindulgent, complacent, and disrespectful citizens of our decadent culture. In this way she may have accomplished what she set out to do in the beginning with this essay, which was to convince the target culture they need...

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