the power in the rumor by john updike essay sample essay

John Updike’s narrative “The Rumor” is about the battle of a married twosome to keep their normal ( and instead tiring ) being amid rumours that Frank Whittier. the hubby in this modern twosome. is holding a homosexual matter with a immature adult male. The rumour that begins the narrative brings a sense of tenseness between Frank and his married woman. Sharon. This tenseness is heightened by the manner that Frank at one time denies the rumour and yet maintain his married woman nervous by chat uping with work forces throughout the narrative. Finally. Frank finds a new power through his experience with this rumour. Frank Whittier is an interesting and memorable character. so. because of the manner he took a negative state of affairs and flipped it into a positive. found the daring to dispute his married woman as she challenged him. and finally found a new power within himself.

First of all. it is interesting to observe that Frank Whittier seems to be caught in a compromising state of affairs early in the narrative. There is a rumour that he has a homosexual lover ; a rumour he denies. Yet he can non turn out his artlessness to his married woman. He is already under her intuition because of an matter he had old ages before. So he is hence trapped. holding this rumour invariably held over him by his married woman. The text states that. “now that she was watchful to the rumor’s diaphanous presence. she imagined it everywhere” ( Updike # # ) . Frank’s state of affairs. therefore can be seen as instead gluey and uncomfortable. But Frank was able to happen a manner to toss the state of affairs about. Near the terminal of the narrative. Frank comes to recognize that because his married woman really believed the rumour up to a point. she had subconsciously let her fear for Frank’s gender control her. As Frank comes to see what the rumour really had meant to him and to his married woman. he realizes that he has been empowered slightly by this rumour. Therefore Frank is able to take a apparently negative state of affairs and happen something positive about it.

Another interesting characteristic Frank shows in the narrative is that he meets the challenge posed to him by his married woman. The challenge that Sharon puts him to is simple ; he must turn out somehow that he is still heterosexual and that he still loves her. This challenge proved harder than it sounds. because every move that Frank made to turn out that he was consecutive and that he loved his married woman was looked on every bit merely a screen for his true feelings. At one point the text states that to Sharon it seemed “as if heterosexual public presentation were a responsibility he checked off” ( Updike # # ) . Alternatively of fighting against his married woman in this game he evidently could non win. Frank took an opposite path. Alternatively of seeking to turn out his gender to her. he alternatively flirted with the thought of being homosexual. Frank felt justified in torturing her because of her uncorroborated intuitions. traveling every bit far as “glancing over at her. state. when an particularly magnetic immature server served them” ( Updike # # ) . In this manner. Frank was able to run into the challenge his married woman posed to him by non being defensive but alternatively by being violative.

The power Frank found within himself by the terminal of the narrative really had small to make with his sexual penchant. Although it is true that the last lines of the narrative imply that Frank is really sing a same-sex relationship. the effects of the rumour reach much farther than his love life. Frank has found the secret of keeping power over others. This applies non merely to his married woman. but to anyone from now on who thinks of him as a simple individual. Frank summed up this internal alteration when he tells his married woman that she can be fooled. and that. “people aren’t that simple” ( Updike # # ) . This newfound power makes Frank a much more interesting and unsafe character.

In John Updike’s narrative “The Rumor” . Frank Whittier undergoes a serious alteration of character because of a rumour that he has become a homosexual. This transmutation leaves Frank a different and more powerful individual. Although some readers might differ with the manner Frank handled the state of affairs and the manner he treated his married woman. both past and present. the fact remains that Frank has a nice caput on his shoulders. Because of the manner in which he flipped a bad state of affairs into a positive 1. the manner he met his wife’s challenge. and the power he found within himself. Frank Whittier becomes an interesting character.

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