The Revolutionaries In Time Of The Temptress

825 words - 3 pages

The Revolutionaries in Time of the Temptress

 
   Karl Marx determined that the oppressed proletariat would grow weary of the system in which they are constantly overlooked and overpowered by their oppressors. The people would join together and revolt against the power-controlling elite known as the bourgeois. In popular entertainment, it is common that any the plight of the commoners is overlooked and any potential uprisings ignored. In Violet Winspear's Time of the Temptress, the characters suppress the revolt of the jungle's monkeys because they willfully misunderstand the attacks. Even though the monkeys' Marxist revolution is mostly unseen, it is highly organized and pointed, and involves all the monkeys in the jungle, fighting for the freedom to share the jungle with the humans more equitably and justly.

 

In Marxist theory, all societies would revolt against oppression. We might therefore extend this principle to non-human societies as well. The lower and middle classes, or proletarians, would become angry at their oppressors, the bourgeoisie, and band together, seeking a self-governing state: only a "violent overthrow of the bourgeoisie [would] lay the foundation for the sway of the proletariat" (Marx 241).

 

The monkeys in the jungle near Tanga are angered by their continued oppression by the local natives, the rebels, and other humans who pass through their territory. Infuriated that they are forced to leave their homes on the jungle floor for the sanctuary of the trees whenever humans enter their jungle, they join together to fight off the invaders. Thus they react as does "an oppressed class under the sway of the feudal nobility" (Marx 234-35). In order to overcome the menace, the monkeys create a plan to drive off the human explorers. Eve and Wade, the unfortunate and gomless duo trekking through the jungle, bear the brunt of the first assaults, but hardly even notice the attacks of the infuriated monkeys. When the attacks take place, they brush them off with thoughts that the monkeys are merely playing. Despite efforts to fight the bourgeoisie, the simian army is dismissed with a cursory and narcissistic response: that the monkeys are "curious about us but not dangerous" (Winspear 20). Thus the oppressors find ways to deny the revolt of the masses.

 

The monkeys obviously plan their attempted...

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