Robert Zacharias EN 2220 6


Robert Zacharias EN 2220 6.0 November 9th 2017 Anne of Green Gables novel and how it has reshaped the Canadian literature The novel of Anne of Green Gables by Lucy Maud Montgomery has been considered as one of the most powerful pieces of literature in Canadian history. Montgomerys Anne of Green Gables release brought immediate success on her writing profusely as it was immediately translated into over 20 different languages. While the novel was originally meant for children, its structure and design reflects a broader trend in the modern Atlantic-Canadian literature that highlights the difference between the expectations of the outsiders about life and peaceful lived realities of the Atlantic Canadians (Wyile 1). Essentially, considering the way the novel was quickly adopted by other cultures, it is evident that Montgomery has universally appealed the world through her literature and this is an implication that her influence even beyond Atlantic Canada is evident. As such, the popularity of the novel can be attributed to the very captivating themes and structure which so far have made the novel maintain such high level of popularity in Canadian literature and beyond. I will analyse how the themes, structure, and the success of the Anne of Green Gables with regard to how it has shaped our understanding of early Canadian literature, and still maintaining popularity in Canada today. On close examination of some of the themes at Anne of Green Gables, it is evident that Montgomerys strategy of bringing the contrast between imagination and reality succeeded. While Anne in the novel is considered to be synonymous with imagination, the reality of the dangerous side of imaginations when she almost drowns in the river dawns to her (Wyile 21). Montgomerys use of imagery to illustrate how Anne interacted with nature implies her ability to integrate reality and imaginations although she successfully shows how dangerous some imaginations can be in reality. Though Montgomerys Anne of Green Gables has been often considered to be representing the fictional world, it conveys a sense of lived realities of the ancient Atlantic Canadians, which altogether reflects the trends of the recent Canadian literature. By illustrating how Anne Shirley survived a series of various injustices during her adolescence, Montgomery brings into focus the aspect of perseverance as reflected in Annes character leading to her success. Being a young girl who had been adopted by strangers, Annes early life was dominated by illusions which often made her to remain a worried girl most of the time. For instance, in the novel Anne woke three times in the night and made pilgrimages to her window to make sure that Uncle Abes prediction was not coming true (Montgomery, 52). This is a reflection of how the people that lived with Anne made her life miserable, since they filled her life with fear. However, Montgomery brings out Anne as such a tough girl who not only overcame hardship in her growing up, but also overcame self hatred as reflected when she continuously had negative attitude towards her looks. Her loathing for herself was however neutralised by her positive dreams and imaginations which made her remain with aspirations for a better future life. As such, it can be argued that Montgomery has succeeded in creating a contrasting image of Anne one in which she continuously hated herself and another in which she always imaged positive things for herself. This played an important role in bringing out the true character of Anne, a highly resilient girl with unmatched optimism for better things to come, despite her current struggles. In this context, Montgomery seems to have succeeded in creating a very powerful personality in Anne, who can be considered to be representing the struggles that women have been facing under the oppressions of men, until they successfully managed to fight for their rights in the wake of globalisation. Most importantly, in an era where women writers were very rare, Montgomerys success in writing Anne of Green Gables, in which she created the character of a young girl who survives so many injustices has largely contributed towards championing of women rights in the Canadian history. Essentially, through the creation of the strong character in Anne Shirley, Montgomery was able to highlight the strong connection between women and success which so far has continued to inspire women in the country. In modern Canada, it can be argued that Montgomerys Anne of Green Gables gave a new sense of hope to the new generations especially as a result of her overwhelming success as legend in the Canadian literature, alongside her outstanding fictional writing (Wyile 1). As such, it can be argued that the novel has successfully bridged the ancient Canada and the modern Canada, as reflected in the way it has received acceptance all through the generation, not only in Canada but also beyond in other countries. Montgomerys Anne of Green Gables has often been associated with symbolism as she tried to describe some of her characters in the novel. For example, the author established the difference between Marilla and Anne when she pointed out that Id rather walk calmly along and do without the flying and the thud… (Montgomery 84). From this quote, it is evident that Annes personality is impulsive, as reflected in her imaginations whereas Marilla on the other hand never imagines or dreams of anything as she seems to be plodding on through life tranquilly. While Marillas character saves her from disappointments of life, it can be argued that it deprives her excitements that Anne seems to enjoy. Though Annes life is filled with imaginations and optimism which makes her to remain excited most of the time, the downward part of that is when reality strikes and she realises that her dreams are unfounded. Through creating such characters in such a symbolic manner, Montgomery has succeeded in inspiring a sense of creativity in presenting opposite characters in the same context. Her work remains a critical benchmark even for modern day writers in the Canadian literature to bring a sense of creativity in their presentation of characters in their literary works. Further, Montgomery seems to bring the aspect of sacrifice and selflessness in the women as reflected by Anne when she makes a selfless decision in an attempt to make the eyesight of Marilla strong and also stop her from relying on the selling of Green Gables. This is reflected when Anne indicates that, When I left queens my future seem to stretch out before me like straight road. I thought I could see along it for many a milestone. Now there is a bend in it. I dont know what lies around the bend, but Im going to believe that the best does… (Montgomery, 101). In this quote, Anne seems to be expressing her optimism for making such a noble choice, since despite something being her dream always, it does not necessarily emerge to be the best for her and hence leading to her choice of doing what she perceives to be the most dignified for her. Though this novel is more than a century old, its current application in the society cannot be underestimated. This is because this novel still finds its relevance in explaining how women today have continued to make critical sacrifices to the society as they fight for their spaces in the previously male-dominated spheres. In addition, the style used by Montgomery is considered to be an inspiration to many writers who consider her work to be reflecting the reality in the society. The theme of fashion and looks also seem to emerge clearly in Montgomerys novel as reflected when Anne pointed out that, it is ever so much easier to be good if your clothes are fashionable. At least, it is easier for me. I suppose it doesnt make such a difference to naturally good people… (Montgomery, 69). From this quote, Anne seems to place enormous weight on both fashion and looks as she links them to moral conduct. However, her red hair makes her feel unfashionable and hence she has negative attitude towards herself until she came to accept her hair and finally herself regardless of her looks. This literary style of creating characters based on their physical looks has made Montgomery to receive applause from various writers. The art of painting characters based on their physical outlook can be attributed to the success of the novel Anne of Green Gables since the readers are able to have an imagination of the characters. As a result, the novel seems to have connected well with the audience as its implications even in the modern world seem to be relevant, despite being written more than a century ago. From this perspective, therefore, it can be argued that Montgomerys thoughts when writing the novel were doubtful to the future to reflect the prowess of the female gender in managing hardships in their bid to achieve self realization in the context of male-dominated spheres. In conclusion, it can be argued that the novel Anne of Green Gables by Lucy Maud Montgomery was revolutionary in Canadian literature history, as it laid down a platform for other writers and as it has continued to inspire thousands of people across the globe. Though it was a fictional literary work, Montgomery has succeeded in creating a piece of literature which foreshadowed the future, if not inspired it. Having received acceptance across the world, the novel Anne of Green Gables, which revolves around a young girl who not only triumphed after undergoing a life full of hardship in her adolescence, but also gave her an opportunity for self realization seems to have succeeded in inspiring future generations not only in Canada but also across the world since the novel was translated in over 20 languages. As such, from the analysis of the themes and structure of the novel, it is evident that Lucy Maud Montgomery has succeeded in reshaping the early Canadian literature, and hence making her quite a popular figure in the world of literature in Canada today. Works Cited Montgomery, Lucy. Anne of Green Gables. Dalmatian Press, 2005. Print. Wyile, Herb. Anne of Tim Hortons Globalization and reshaping of Atlantic-Canadian Literature. Wilfrid Laurier University Press,2011. Print. Soni Y, dXiJ(x(I_TS1EZBmU/xYy5g/GMGeD3Vqq8K)fw9
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