Galapagos I. First Reactions A. After I read Galapagos, I thought it was a good story. It was a little different from other novels I have read in that the author, Kurt Vonnegut, had a different style than most other authors. I liked how he made comments about humans big brains that always gave them foolish or reckless ideas that almost always had negative results.
The way he showed how a world changed because people no longer thought that paper money was valuable provoked many thoughts about how something like that could actually happen. B. I saw myself a few times throughout the book. For example, I saw myself in Mandarax; always a source of some information, none of which is of use to most people. Mandarax would always have something to say under any circumstance, but usually what it said had nothing to do with what was going on. Much like an internet search engine, you give it a bit of information and in return you get a whole lot of nothing.
I also saw myself in Leon Trout. When the blue tunnel into the afterlife came for him, he didnt want to go until he found out what happened to the people on the ship. Once I start reading something and it gets to a situation where someone is in trouble; I dont like to stop until I know they are safe. From this story I learned a lesson.
Dont always trust your big brain?! Though it may tell the rest of your body to do the things that make you live and breathe, it will sometimes tell you to something that might endanger or kill you. For instance, Mary Hepburns brain told her to put a plastic dress bag over her head to kill herself. I also learned to not judge someone by first sight or based on little knowledge. When Mary Hepburn first met James Wait, he was feeding some starving children. She immediately thought that he was a good guy and she really liked him before she knew anything about him.
It turns out that Wait is a con man who has robbed and widowed many women. Mary Hepburn would never know that, however. After I read the book, I was somewhat inspired to make a friend. Someone like Leon Trout, he has been around for a while and would probably have quite a bit to say.
He has had many experiences and would be able to help you out when your big brain got you in trouble or hurt or what not. He would probably be an incredibly good history tutor too. I learned some things about the Galapagos Islands as well. The book spoke of the mating rituals of blue footed boobies and how marine iguanas digest seaweed and some other information about Charles Darwin and what he thought about the place.
II. Point of View A. The point of view would have to be first-person, but the character that the author inhabits is dead and can see into the minds of people. With this ability, the author goes into the minds and hearts of anyone he wants. He does this a lot to give a background of each of the characters. He goes into their past thoughts and actions and gives a general idea of how each of the characters thinks and responds to different situations.
It helps to get a feel for the personality of everyone as well. B. The point of view greatly influenced the perception of the story. If the author couldnt get into the minds of each of the characters, the reader wouldnt be able to know what the person was thinking, which played a good part in the story.
Particularly because the author made mention to how the great big brains of one million years ago (1986 A.D.) gave people all of these thoughts and ideas that people today cant do with their smaller brains. The story might have been different told from another point of view. Had it been told from the objective point of view, the author wouldnt have been able to effectively get across the ideas of the great big brains that the characters had. Nor would he have been able to give his own insights and ideas about the characters. The point of view played a big role in being able to tell the story effectively.
III. Commentary on Plot and Structure A. The title of the story, Galapagos, was referring to the group of islands on which the people on the Nature Cruise of the Century were stranded, and thus, became the last people alive on Earth after everyone else died. The name of the islands also bore some significance to the fact that the scientist Charles Darwin had once visited there. Darwin came up with the law of natural selection which ended up making those great big brains shrink and for humans to develop flippers. B.
The effect of the first few pages is that the story might be about how animals got to the Galapagos Islands. It only tells the theories people have about how the creatures got the islands. It says, back when humans had bigger brains and other things that let on that it might be about evolution somewhat. It makes mention to a small city in Ecuador that might make the reader think its about that city or in that are that the story takes place, which it does. C. James Wait This character didnt hold many values.
He was a con man who married rich women, stole all of their money, and then left them. The only values he held were those of the false people he was pretending to be in order to steal some ladys money. His purpose was to show the dishonest things the big brain could come up with and Wait also served as husband to Mary toward the end of the story. He made Mary happy for a short time; she didnt know of his past. Society was probably what influenced him to do these rotten things.
Society was still in love with money, though it was becoming worthless in most places. The want for money is most likely what caused him to take advantage of those women Mary Hepburn She seemed to be a kind person who cared about what she did. She was a teacher and loved what she did. She thought Wait to be a good person when he was feeding six starving kanka bono girls, so she valued love and kindness. She cared for Wait when he was dying, showing that she had kindness and sympathy in her.
Her purpose in the story was to provide a way for human life on earth to continue and to evolve. Without her experiments on the island, life never would have progressed. It would have stopped when the island inhabitants ceased to exist. She was the worlds second Eve in a way. Society didnt affect Mary in any noticeable ways. Zenji Hiroguchi Zenji had a good set of values.
He tried to be a good husband and soon to be father, but he wasnt alive to see his daughter. His values werent very high though because he went behind the back of his employer to meet with Andrew Macintosh. They were discussing Zenjis future and that he should work for Macintosh. His purpose in the book was to give life to his daughter Akiko. Society was what influenced him to want to make more money, which made him want to make for Macintosh who would give him more money, which in turn would ultimately bring about his death.
Hisako Hiroguchi She worked for her money. She tried to make her marriage work and be good. She worked hard to become good in her craft, ikebana. Her purpose in the story was to give birth to and help raise Akiko, her furry daughter.
Society really had no effects that were evident. Andrew Macintosh This man was willing to do anything in his power to get his way. Did this man have values? Not hardly. He did everything he did just for personal gain. The only values he might have had were family ones. He did love his daughter, Selena.
Andrew was in the story to get Hisako her unborn daughter Akiko, and Selena to Guayaquil. Societys money love is what this guy was. Selena Macintosh Not much is known about her except she loves her seeing- eye dog kazakh. So, she must have love for animals, which is a value.
The purpose for her to be in the book would be to help raise Akiko. She really had no other purpose. She was a minor character and was not influence by society. Adolf von Kleist A somewhat low set of values. He was an alcoholic and didnt work too hard at his job.
He was just there on the Bahia de Darwin to talk to people and make them feel good. His purpose was to be the common sire of all mankind. He was the next Adam so to speak. Not much was known about him to determine how society affected him. Kanka Bono girls Since none of the girls characters were developed, they will be referred to as a group. They were part of a cannibal tribe, they ate Selenas dog, but again, they werent developed enough to really tell what their values were.
They were in the story because they would have all the children on the island. Leon Trout The main character. Seems he values knowledge, since he has been dead for more than one million years just to see how the people from The Nature Cruise of the Century do. The purpose of Leon was to tell the story of all these people. He was a ghost character.
Society influenced him to dislike great big brains, like the one he had. The ones that made people do all sorts of nasty things. D. The conclusion to the story was, in my opinion, very suitable. It was different from what you would expect, but good nonetheless.
Leon finds that his father didnt live in vain, and he gets to go to Sweden and make a living. Mary dies, the captain dies, the kanka bono girls have kids and have given humans a chance to further evolve, which they did, into small brained creatures. They now have flippers, eat mainly fish, and no longer …