Essay - Happy Endings Margaret Atwood's Happy Endings is an Illustration of...

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Happy Endings

Margaret Atwood's Happy ***** is an illustration of the premise that the ending ***** a story is always ***** same, only the middle matters. This ***** is predicated on the fact that ultimately everyone dies, conveniently ignoring ***** fact that a ***** need not be carrying through to this ultimate conclusion to have relevance.

This contrivance aside, Atwood's point is ***** focus the reader on the importance of understanding how ***** conclusion ***** reached and why. The six story sketches contained in Happy Endings illustrate vast differences between the beginnings and middles ***** ***** stories that end the same way.

Thus, the six stories present differing views of cause and effect. The underlying ********** is that in the absence ***** love, conflict arises. That ***** is necessary to propel the story, to make it interesting. For example, Atwood renders A, D and E quickly. *****se s*****ries are full of love, and have no particular conflict. The result of th***** lack ***** conflict, as ***** presents *****, is a lack of an interesting story.

***** examples ***** B and C illustrate stories with conflict. The point ********** makes towards ***** end is that it is ***** the actions themselves that are the main point of interest, but the reasons for the actions. The conflict that arises between Mary and John in B derives from a l*****ck of ***** on ***** part ***** John. ***** heart of the story is not ***** ***** does not love Mary, ***** why he does not ***** why she does ***** him. These questi*****s reach into the core of the two characters and are ***** key to insight.

With C, there ***** more conflict, again deriving from a l*****ck of love. Mary is not in love ***** John and from that conflict arises. John's motivations are explored somewhat, while ********** ***** given only superficial treatment. Indeed, the ********** ***** the treatment given to ***** hows and whys in story C show that without them, the story is less compelling. While more action happens in ***** than ***** B, it is less interesting. ***** was focused more on the hows ***** whys, which helped to drive the *****. C focused on *****, at Atwood puts it l*****er the 'what', and this is why the s*****ry in ***** fails to compel.

***** using the framework of ***** six plot *****, Atwood further illustrates the point about cause and effect. The F sketch seems completely glossed over ***** ***** point ***** flippancy, but it serves to illustrate that the *****, 'what', 'what' of ***** plot is essentially irrelevant. The story might seem more *****, she points out, because ***** things happen, but ********** there is no ***** cause or effect. The relationship ***** John and Mary contains love, ***** therefore ***** no conflict. ***** revolutionary *****line serves to infuse a sense of ***** into a story th*****t essentially has none. Therefore, the ***** plotline ***** window dressing, serving merely to distract the reader from the fact that


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