The Pleasure Of My Company And Raymond Carver 's Will You Please Be Quiet, Please?

2316 Words Nov 27th, 2014 10 Pages
Lucy Knipe
Essay #3 M01A

Contrast Essay
Steve Martin’s The Pleasure of my Company and Raymond Carver’s Will You Please Be Quiet, Please?

The ancient fabulist Aesop famously wrote that “every truth has two sides; it is as well to look at both, before we commit ourselves to either.” The truth as it pertains to love, is no different. In a juxtaposition of Steve Martin’s Pleasure of my Company and Raymond Carver’s Will You Please Be Quiet, Please, this duality of love’s power is both what unifies and creates distinction in these two very different pieces of work. There are three striking differences between these two works: dominate character arch, psychological narrative and literary style.

The first way The Pleasure of my Company and Will You Please Be Quiet, Please differ is that their respective protagonists Daniel Cambridge and Ralph Wyman have inverted character arcs. In The Pleasure of my Company, Daniel is introduced as psychologically unstable with self-imposed spatial boundaries in the form of curbs that either tremendously complicate his routes, or just keep him from straying too far from his apartment. All the interpersonal relationships in his life are either superficial or completely imaginary. A novel about the “masquerade of discomfort and struggle not with conformity but with the social act of living” (Stevens), Daniel’s mental illness has both complicated his ability to connect with the physical world and with other people. Ralph, on the other hand,…

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