Lit. Crit. Jaws Essay

2744 words - 11 pages

JAWS In the novel Jaws written by Peter Benchley, Critics are correct when they claim that the novel has a lack of characterization, the book is used as an escape, Benchley is a master of suspense writing, the novel displays the facts of Great White's and critics claim that the novel also displays formuliac plotting, and is an allusion to classic fish tales such as; Herman Melville's Moby Dick, and Hemingway's The Old Man and the Sea. Critics need to loosen up on irritating Benchley with obvious, but not intentional comparison to fish tales and sub plotting. Peter Benchley was born 1940 may 8 in New York. He is the son of a very literary oriented family. His father Nathaniel Goddard was also an author. Benchley was educated at Harvard University. Some of Benchley's interests are Diving,tennis, wildlife, the theater, and films. In addition to all this Benchley has a love for the ocean. Benchley has been a novelist, a reporter, an editor, staff assistance to the president, and has worked in the White House doing other various things. There is a particular interesting moment in Benchley's life. When he was working in the White House, the president picked up some of his work to read it and said something along the lines of "Bull shit". The president basically called it trash. The majority of his novels are closely related to the ocean if not in the ocean. An example of some of these are The Beast or White Shark. Both of those of which were made into screen plays. He also wrote a childrens book called Jonathan Visits the White House. One of Benchley's greatest successes is that his novel Jaws was on the New York Times best-seller list for over forty weeks. This made him the most successful first novelist in literary history. Jaws the motion picture was so successful that there was were sequels, Jaws 2, Jaws 3-D, and Jaws the Revenge. As one can see Peter Benchley has a great love for the sea and marine life. He has done plenty of research to back up almost everything that goes on in his novels such as shark facts, fishing facts, weather facts and much more. Jaws is a great novel about the town of Amity that relays on tourism. A White shark was terrorizing the towns people and their business, while the young Matt Hooper a ichthyologist has an affair with Brody's wife. Brody,Quint the fisherman, and Hooper all set out to catch the fish. They all lost their lives except Brody while attempting to catch the fish. The fish eventually dies in the end. Characterization is a main issue in the novel Jaws. As critic, John Spurling puts it, "The characterization of the humans is fairly rudimentary", (54) Indeed this is true, it is pretty basic. That is not exactly what Peter Benchley was reaching for. He is reaching for suspense. Critic Michael Rogers claims the characters as neither "likable or interesting", (260). The characters are not very likable. Benchley displays them all with bad habits and regrets, for example,...

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