Discuss The Ways In Which Your Engagement With The Construction Of A Character Or Characters In "The Collector" Has Contributed To Your Understanding Of The Text.

2238 words - 9 pages

As a reader I found that the characters in The Collector contribute to my understanding of the text. In The Collector by John Fowles, the reader's engagement with Miranda and Clegg helps them to understand Fowles idea of a class dominated society, in England during the 1960's. The Collector is a novel that compares the upper middle-class, where Miranda is placed in the societal ladder, and lower working class such as Clegg. Miranda belongs to a class where she feels comfortable and trys not to be class predjucided. In contrast, Clegg who comes from a working class family, obviously looks down on his companions that belong to that same class as him. Eventhough he is of the same social stature, he believes that he is better than his peers. It is obvious that Clegg, is uncomfortable where he stands on the social ladder. The Collector is a novel that compares the upper middle-class, where Miranda is placed in the societal ladder, and lower working class such as Clegg.The setting of The Collector is important because we become associated with Clegg's character. Through the use of setting we see the character of Clegg as abnormal and we reject Clegg and everything he stands for. The Collector has several settings. The settings are centered around the house that Clegg bought in the South of Sussex. Within this area settings include the cellar or 'dungeon' and the outside world. Within the text, Clegg, who uses first person narration, refers to Miranda as an object, shut up in his perverted little world, where he is free. He shuts Miranda up in her dungeon, because she is better than him, though through class. He believes that he can proceed to her social stature if he were to captur and hold her prisioner. Although Clegg holds Miranda as his prisioner, he does not proceed to her class, but instead constantly critizes her because of this. Clegg locks Miranda into a 'dungeon' because he wants to her and her class. She is locked into a cellar that is described by Clegg as being uninhabitable by human life."...It was cold, out of the sun, damp, nasty...Someone had whitewashed the walls, but it was a long time ago, and pieces bad come off so that the walls looked mottled..." (Clegg, page 20).This is the place that Clegg, keeps the woman he 'loves', prisioner. If most people were to see this deep, dark dungeon, they would be immediately repelled. In contrast when Clegg sees this dungeon, he sees the ideas forming in his head. He also sees his 'loved one' being captured, and being held there. The reader sympathises for Miranda, because they reject the setting in which she is being held against her free will. By engaging with Miranda's character, the reader understands and believes her situation, and so sides with her. As the reader agrees with Miranda, they take on her view that class between Miranda and Clegg causes Clegg to become angry and treat Miranda without respect. There is the view that class will always come between Clegg and Miranda. While Miranda...

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