Down the Rabbit Hole
Boys journey to becoming a man
“One of the signs of passing youth, is the birth of a sense of fellowship with other human beings as we take our place among them” (Virginia Wolfe). In our culture, do we define the moment a boy becomes a man by his age? Is it by his size, stature or accomplishments? Does it happen the first time he makes love to a woman? Wikipedia defines coming of age as a young person’s transition from childhood to adulthood. I believe adulthood can be distinguished by something less tangible than size, stature, money, responsibilities, social status, etc. It is an internal function that although illusive, has been described through out time as compassion, self awareness, connectivity, emotional
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Where do I fit into this world? Are also challenges the hero must discover that tie into his self worth and new found identity. They are central themes which give Bandini the necessary material to continue his evolution and self discovery. “I stood before the mirror once more, shaking my fists defiantly. Here I am, folks. Take a look at a great writer! Notice my eyes, folks. The eyes of a great writer. Notice my jaw, folks. The jaw of a great writer.” (Fante pg. 57). A reflection of a successful writer is what he longs to show to the public. He goes into the city and buys the cloths he thinks a writer ought to wear. Upon his return, he looks at his image and begins to panic and feel uncomfortable. “Mother in Heaven, what had happened to the old Bandini” (Fante pg.59). “I pulled everything off, washed the smells out of my hair, and climbed into my old clothes. They were very glad to see me again; they clung to me with cool delight” (Fante pg. 59.). Authenticity pores from him as he decides to peel away the the phony facade and crawl back into his old cloths. Metaphorically this is an important moment in Bandini’s unfoldment. “ What doth it profit a man if he gain the whole world and suffer the loss of his own soul” (Fante pg.105). He decides that he is content with himself just the way he is and that he doesn’t need a venire to be of value to the world.
In Chapter eight Bandini goes from a starving artist to having more money than he knows what to do with almost over