Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Mosquito Coast reviewed by Vanesa N1 1B

Our third-year student Vanesa read Paul Theroux's novel The Mosquito Coast. It is also a movie (though neither Vanesa nor her teacher has seen the film-- sorry! Anyway, thanks to Vanesa for recommending this contemporary novel. It is obviously quite thought provoking.-- David)

The Mosquito Coast: Civilization versus Barbarism

Allie Fox decides to go to the jungle with his family. The idea is to leave behind the capitalism, consumerism and corruption of his country, United States. But he doesn’t know that wickedness is born with men.
He buys a village called Jeronimo, where he wants to create an independent, simple and happy life. But early on all the family –except for the father- realize that the place is unsafe and living there is very hard: they must do everything (build a house, cultivate vegetables, hunt, fish). Life is not comfortable in the jungle and for a child it is even harder.
The family follow their leader, Allie Fox, but soon they question if living there is worthwhile, the way to reach happiness. But this situation doesn’t bother Allie Fox, he continues following his ideals, his dreams, although he starts going crazy.
They suffer fire, theft and accidents, and the part bad of nature, so these horrible things show that life in the jungle is not so different from life in civilization. Modern life offers stress, envy, robberies, hurry, pollution, lower quality of life,… but then life in a small town or even in the jungle can offer the same. All the things depends of the point of view. We can live far from the city and have annoying neighbors who steal your food, or also we can have problems to get food or build a house. Life in the city is complicated, but offers security and comfort.
Finally, the most important things – our basic needs is to sleep, eat and love. Maybe, it’s not necessary go to the end of the world peace and happiness. The important thing is the way that we walk through our life.

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