Fear of Despodency in What, of This Goldfish, Would You Wish

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In life we make many relationships. As humans, we rely on our social experiences to help define who we are. Our relationships with others help define who we are by invoking the fear of despondency, encouraging us to work hard, and by appreciating our values. Feeling lost and hopeless causes external and internal struggles. In The Lottery, Tessie Hutchinson cries, “You didn’t give him time enough to take any paper he wanted,” (Shirley Jackson 31). Tessie was frightful because she knew one of her family members would be killed for the harvest. When Tessie realizes that she will be that she will be the one sacrificed for the harvest she exclaims, “It’s not fair” (Jackson 31). 

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Tessie knew there wasn’t any hope left for her. What, of This Goldfish, Would You Wish, also deals with a character that deals with fear of despondency. “Before the mind of Sergei Goralick really understands what it is his body has done, he seems to have taken the burner off the stove and hit the boy in the head,” (Etgar Keret 6). Sergei is afraid that the boy is going to steal the goldfish. He acts on impulse and attacks the boy because Sergei sees the goldfish as a friend. Encouragement to work hard and improve who we are can impact us and everyone around us. My So-Called Enemy by Lisa Gossels shows how an outside source can bring people together (Gossels, 2002, 2:49). 

Without the help of the Building Bridges organization, the girls would have never been able to become friends. In Things Fall Apart, Ikemefuna is a role model for Nwoye, “He was like an elder brother to Nwoye, and from the very first seemed to have kindled a new fire in the young boy. He made him feel grown-up; and they no longer spent the evenings in his mother’s hut while she cooked but now sat with Okonkwo in his obi” (Chinua Achebe 45). Okonkwo was growing fond of the young men and wanted to distill his knowledge of war and blood in them. The appreciation of our views help us feel more secure. “ Okonkwo was especially fond of Ezinma. She looked very much like her mother, who was once the village beauty” (Achebe 60). Okonkwo admired his daughter because of her natural beauty. 

He also admired her because she was able to understand him. Okonkwo often wished that his daughter was a boy because she has a good work ethic. Even though Okonkwo admired his daughter, he rarely showed his affection because he was afraid to be called weak. Okonkwo also happens to be fond of Ikemefuna, “Even Okonkwo himself became very fond of the boy” (Achebe 24), Ikemefuna has the work ethic that Okonkwo wishes Nwoye possessed. He also fills the void between Okonkwo and Nwoye. Invoking the fear of despondency, encouraging us to work harder, and appreciating our values can change how we define ourselves and how others see us. These actions can have negative and positive effects on us. Therefore, It is important to choose our relationships wisely. 

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