Story “Mr. Know- All” Essay Sample
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Story “Mr. Know- All” Essay Sample
A rich Britishmerchant of Oriental origin, called Mr. Kelada, meets a group of Westerners on a shipsailing across the Pacific Ocean. His cabin-mate, a British citizen who is the nameless narrator of the story, dislikes Mr. Kelada even before he sees him. However, at theend of the pride and reputation to save an American ladys marriage.As a result, he earns the respect of the narrator.story Mr. Kelada, the Levantine jeweller, proves to be a real gentlemanwhen he sacrifices his own THE SETTING Time- a short time after World War I. It is mentioned for two reasons. First, itjustifies the accidental meeting in the same cabin of the narrator and Mr. Kelada. Thepassenger traffic on the ocean-liners was heavy, so the narrator had to agree to share a cabin with a person he disliked. Second, it may give us a possible reason for the narrators unjustified antagonism towards Mr. Kelada. Usually, during periods of war, feelings of prejudice and dislike for foreigners grow stronger. Place it takes place on a ship in INTERNATIONAL WATERS a neutral place. The journey for the USA to Japan takes 14 days. The ship becomes the symbol of the world with people who are prejudiced and even racists. The characters The narrator is presented as a typical upper class Englishman. He wants to be addressed with mister in front of his name. He likes formality, He is snobbish. Max Kelada is presented as a typical Levantine (Middle Eastern).
In the beginning he appears to be an insensitive person who interferes in other peoples lives. He is informal, loud, dogmatic and a know all. At the end of the story he is presented as a sensitive and caring man who does not want to hurt Mrs. Rmsay. At the end we discover that he was a real know all. The narrator judged Mr. Kelada by his appearance and his behaviour . The narrator is prejudiced because he prejudged Kelada at the beginning of the story, before he even met him. At the end he found out that he was wrong. However, he remained a typical upper-class Englishman but became more tolerant of people who may not be English. By the end he did not entirely dislike Mr. Kelada. At the end we find out that Mr. Kelada is actually a pragmatic person and not dogmatic as he was presented. Mr. Kelada behaved like a gentleman. He is the real pearl in the story. THE CHARACTERS The characters may be divided into different groups The major characters Mr. Kelada and the narrator The minor characters Mr. And Mrs. Ramsay, and the doctor.
The prejudiced the narrator and Mr. Ramsay. The non-prejudiced Mr. Kelada, the doctor and Mrs.Ramsay. The Oriental Mr. Kelada The Westerners Mr. And Mrs. Ramsay and the narrator. The characters are described by their appearance and characteristics, except for the narrator. THE NARRATION- point of view The story is told in the first person the narrator sees everything and is a part of theplot. In the first episode , where he meets with Mr. Kelada, the narrator is more active, and involved . He observes, comments and judges Mr. Kelada as he sees him through his own eyes. Since he is influenced by his prejudiced society, his judgments are subjective .In the second episode , involving the necklace examination, the narrator is less involved . He is like a cameraman who takes photos and writes down what he hears objectively . After the chain examination is over, the narrator becomes subjective again.In the last episode , the narrator discovers Mr. Keladas true character. As a result, he undergoes a change he realizes that people should not be judged by their looks butby their actions and character.
It is the narrator who closes the story. CRISIS and TURNING POINT OF THE STORY The cultured pearls topic is the crisis of the story. The heated argument between Mr.Ramsay and Mr. Kelada reveals their true characters. Mr. Ramsay appears to be a prejudiced person who does his best to have a fling atthe Levantine. Mrs. Ramsays character is also revealed as being insincere in her relationship withher husband, whom she had been deceiving. When she was alone in New York for ayear, she probably had a lover who gave her the expensive pearls. Nevertheless, shehas the decency to secretly return to Mr. Kelada his lost money. Mr. Kelada , who has been considered a pushy, inconsiderate and vulgar person, turnsout to be a real gentleman who saves Mrs. Ramsays marriage. The narrator also undergoes a change.
When he realizes that Mr. Kelada behaves considerately with Mrs. Ramsay, he says At that moment, I did not entirely dislikeMr. Kelada. Suddenly, he becomes aware that it is not the right way to judge people. This is the moral lesson of the story. REAL PEARLS and CULTURE PEARLS At first glance, real pearls and cultured pearls look the same. But only a closerinspection can reveal what is real and what is imitation. The same goes for people. People from the same nationality seem the same. But only when we get to know them,we see that each person is different. For example, the narrator in the story dislikes Mr.Kelada because of his name, luggage, appearance and nationality.
However, when hesees the true character of Mr. Kelada, he realizes that prejudice is not the right way tojudge people. Therefore, the saying DONT JUDGE A BOOK BY ITS COVER is relevant here ANALYSIS Mr. Know All by W. Somerset Maugham is a short story of simple facts, but with a deeper meaning below the surface. In fact, the story is a fantastic story about prejudice, racism and how what appears to be true, at times is just an illusion. Basic terms and concepts Prejudice unreasonable feelings, opinions, or attitudes, especially of a hostile nature, regarding a racial, religious, or national group. Racism the belief that some people are superior and others are inferior based on racial, religious or national group. Stereotype a widely held, but fixed and oversimplified image or idea, of a particular type of person. (examples Iranians are stingy Moroccans have bad tempers) Setting and its significance The story takes place after World War I on a boat traveling from San Francisco in the United States to Yokohama in Japan. The story takes place in international waters.
This is significant for two reasons By taking place in international waters, and not in a given country, the writer is saying that prejudice is an international problem, and not a problem of any given place. The writer is saying that prejudice and racism are human traits and not the traits of any given culture. The ship becomes the symbol of the world with people who are prejudiced and even racists. Although the characters are far from their native societies, they still bring with them their racial and cultural prejudices and stereotypes. Time The story takes place shortly after World War I. It is mentioned for two reasons It justifies the accidental meeting in the same cabin of the narrator and Mr. Kelada. The passenger traffic on the ocean-liners was heavy, so the narrator had to agree to share a cabin with a person he didnt know at the beginning, and disliked just because of his name. It gives us a possible reason for the narrators unjustified antagonism towards Mr. Kelada. Usually, during periods of war, feelings of prejudice and dislike for foreigners grow stronger. Part One In part one, we are introduced to our narrator (the person who tells the story).
We are led to believe that our narrator, who is English, considers himself to be a gentleman. He considers his breeding to be superior to non-white English citizens from the colonies held by England during this period in history. From the beginning of the story, we are told that our narrator was a highly prejudiced man who was willing to dislike Max Kelada, his cabin-mate on the boat, even before he met him. There are several symbols that represent the authors attitude towards prejudice The closed portholes these represent the close-mindedness of the narrator towards people from other societies. While the narrator is willing to believe that closed portholes (close-mindedness) are the fault of his cabin-mate, he is in fact to be blamed for this.
People who are prejudice tend to blame the targets of the prejudiced feelings, while failing to look at their inner-darkness (the closed portholes posed a problem at night). In fact, Mr. Kelada is a Levantine. A Levantine is someone who comes from Levant, the former name for the geographical area of the eastern Mediterranean that is now occupied by Lebanon, Syria, and Israel. Mr. Kaleda is presented with all the typical stereotypes of a person from the Middle East. He is portrayed as an informal, loud, dogmatic and pushy person who cannot help but interfere in the lives of other people. Part Two In part two of the story, we learn that Mr. Kelada took upon himself to arrange all the social affairs of the cruise. While Mr. Kelada appears to think that his efforts are appreciated, the narrator is quick to point out that He was certainly the best hated man on the ship.