The Other Side Of The Hedge

932 words - 4 pages

Beginning of the 20th century, when industrialism was climbing to its climax, most of the Western Europeans were happy and proud of their achievements brought by machines. However, machines were also the cause of forcing a lot of people who kept traditional techniques out of work because those people couldn't handle mass production. Beside economic progress, European countries had their societies more civilized and modern. That created a psychological gap in people who couldn't chase with the fast-pace progress or couldn't adapt themselves into a new, better life. Witnessed such event, E. M. Forster, a popular English writer at that time, blends his thoughts and the reality together to draw smaller pictures of how people coped with their mental conflicts at that time. Among his works, short story "The Other Side of the Hedge" is not an exception in debunking the idea of crossing one's other boundary of mind to live on. Although a short story, "The Other Side of the Hedge" plays a significant role in connecting two extreme oppositions of life which a person might find hard to blend in.This person is no other than the narrator in the story. He narrates his mind based on another story in which he gets lost on a road and he's stuck in finding the way out though he gets helped by a rescuer. The hedge of trees on the pavement of the road plays as a wall that splits the road and the river apart. Finding another way to be alive, he chooses to cross the hedge; however, he doesn't like the way as it leads to nowhere. Psychologically, the road that the narrator was walking on represents the old days, old traditions before industrialism existed. This could be understood easily by the way he shows his feeling of the road. Other the other side of the hedge, the whole paradise which pictured as prison to the narrator, represents the societal progress, the modern life. That prison-like paradise is like a nightmare to the narrator because he can't stand the way it's connected to his brother's lifestyle, which is always relax and wasted. Truly, two extremes have arisen: one is relaxing, comfortable, and care-free life; one is busy, rushing, and work-oriented life. Hence, those make the narrator get stuck deeply in his mind's conflict.Beside the mind's conflict, the narrator also finds the interrelation between his lifestyle and his brother's one, which are like two poles of the Earth. This is portrayed through two other characters of the story: the educationist and the rescuer. Thinking about these two people's words, the narrator realizes that the conflict he has isn't naturally happened nor standing totally opposite with each other. However, the gap between these two is those...

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