English Blog

What Past?! April 6, 2010

Filed under: Middlesex — writing4english @ 10:30 AM

In book two of Middlesex, Lefty and Desdemona start getting more and more comforatble with their surroundings. They are finding themselves adapting to the lifestyles of Americans and even learning the language. Lefty was even able to get himself a job at the factory with the help of Jimmy Zizmo. “The new country and its language have helped to push the past a little further behind.” (Eugenides, 99) Not only does this quote describe how Lefty and Desdemona are moving on with their lives but this can also relate to Cals situation. For Cal, he took up the job with Foreign Services so he could keep moving around and wouldn’t have to stay in one place. I feel like this really relates with the quote because being in Germany in like a whole new world to him. Nobody knows who he is or what his backround is like, and he doesn’t even speak their language to communicate. With moving all the time, he is able to push his past further behind with all of those factors. No one can judge him on his gender because they don’t know him yet. Cal is like a clean slate ready to make a new life for himself. “No reason to mention my peculiarities, my wandering in the maze these many years shut away from sight.” (Eugenides, 107) At this particular part in the book Cal mentions that he is going on his first date. This just clarifies that with this date he doesn’t have to mention anything. This pushing back the past is the same with Desdemona and Lefty. By them moving to America, nobody will ever find out that they are actually brother and sister. They just pretend that they are just like any other normal newlyweds, and it works for them. This is a way for them to push their lives back into the past as well. Now sometimes you just have to face the present and be able to live with the troubles of your past, but for right now it is okay for Lefty and Desdemona and Cal to have this new life that they are able to mold by themselves into exactly what they want to be percieved as.

-Brittany Cifka

considerable for the paper?

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3 Responses to “What Past?!”

  1. It definitely seems as if the new world would distract them from their past, but it could also make them reminiscent of the past as well

    tyler staruch

  2. I agree Tyler, no matter how much someone tries to run from their past, it always has a way to catch up with them.

    -Jake Morse

  3. Definitely considerable for the essay, Brittany. Nice job and nice comparison. I would like to echo what Tyler and Jake say: if both Cal and Lefty/Des can escape the past for now, once you read finish the book and when you write the essay, see if you think they still manage to escape. (And I would also add that this relates to Detroit escaping it’s past as well).

    ~Jenna G.


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