Comparing the Influence of the Past in 2 Novels

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A 5 page essay on this topic. There is a tendency in the Western mindset to perceive past, present and future as compartmentalized, that is, as distinctly separate from each other, which is an attitude that emphasizes the ability of the individual to shape the present and determine the future. Whatever one's past might be, American individualism holds that it can either be accepted or rejected by the individual, which overlooks the reality of human development and how behavior, vision, expectations, achievements and dilemmas are connected to one's past. Two authors whose fiction illustrates this point are Cynthia Ozick, in her short story "Levitation," and Myla Goldberg in her novel Bee Season. No additional sources cited.