American Culture and Hunter Thompson Essay

Submitted By barbecuelighter999
Words: 654
Pages: 3

How many times in history have we collectively tried to “sugar-coat” the truth, to repress real problems or issues that many did not wish to face? Countless times, and it continues today, although to a lesser extent. For example, up until the 60s and even 70s, patients with mental illnesses, deficiencies or even “significant stupidity” were subjected to horrendous treatments at the hands of unquestioned doctors and institutions whose solutions were more focused on subduing and hiding patients from the public rather than treating actual illnesses. This stance was supported by many of the families of these patients, as the eerie strive for perfection of society in these times took precedence over the truth. Quality lives were limited to those who were “normal,” well off, and to an extent, white. Eventually, the ability to speak of these previously taboo problems surfaced in the late 60s - 70s with the rise of the counterculture movement. Although many of these issues continue into our present day, we can all agree that with the ability to openly converse about them and take physical actions to help alleviate their effects, societal problems will likely only lessen with time. The point is, problems cannot be solved without the knowledge that there is one. Hunter Thompson was most definitely an advocate for this emerging truthfulness, and recognized that there was hope in exposure of imperfection. In conclusion, Hunter Thompson wrote Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas as a memoire of 70’s America and the pressing societal problems that came alone with it.

Secondly, Hunter Thompson wrote Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas as a memoire of American societal problems because of reccuring themes and symbolisms. Throughout the text, recurring themes such as the “American dream” and other aspects of American life make an impression on readers, and generally not in a positive way. In other words, the American Dream or even America itself is presented to the reader in a way that is unapealing. Capitalism, journalism, law enforcement and government are all slandered in Thompson’s surprisingly detailed accounts of past historical events. Although Thompson does dwell on the more negative qualities of Amercan life, one must admit they are valid issues. Violence, another major theme of the novel, unfolds in coutless scenes in the text, illustrating what affects millions of Americans every day, and more specifically, drug users. Thompson stated in the novel that he viewed himself as a “representation of what has gone wrong with American culture,” and is therefore in a sense using himself to demonstrate the faults of culture in America to readers.
Capitalim is another recurring theme, and is portrayed as an