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Shayna S's picture


The question reminds me of the presidential elections. In this case, individual choice varies greatly between states. States with large populations, such as California, tend to diminish the importance of the individual vote. States with small populations, like Rhode Island, exaggerate the importance of a single vote. In the end, however, it is the majority that decides which candidate the state will go to. Using this perspective, one vote does not have the impact that the majority votes have upon an election.

On the other hand, the book mentions constantly the interconnectedness of all things, the web that every person, animal, and inanimate object is involuntarily involved in. The message throughout the second half of the novel is “we are not alone.” In this sense, an individual choice is almost impossible because of the wide-spread influence the costs and benefits will have. The choice of Eddie to shoot the wild turkey took the opportunity of that tom to become another predator’s food. But he also nourished himself and Deanna that would, however minute, lead to the nourishment of their future baby. Individual choice, it seems, may not even exist in the perspective of Prodigal Summer. To sum up the answer to the question, it probably doesn’t matter what you choose, but what or who your decision affects.




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