Man And Society Essay

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Society creates a collective identity of an individual based on their background, geographical location, gender, and their own generation. This collective identity is a powerful public opinion which may be different from the own individual’s personal identity. The importance of obeying the rules of a society is very influential and sometimes causes decisions on the lives of these particular people. On the “Unknown Citizen” by W.H. Auden an unnamed American man is considered to be a saint who served the greater community and served his country in the war. However, on “The Deep River, A Story of Ancient Tribal Migration,” by Bessie Head, a young African man is forced by his people to make a decision to follow the rules of society by being their leader and renouncing to his love and child or to leave his people and create his own rules and individual identity.   Every man has their own identity and their own perspective of their lives. However, the society the man lives in helps determine the paths they take in their lives.
The Unknown Citizen was written at a time when a citizen would rarely voice such an opinionated stance on a subject such as war.   The war was mandatory for the men.   They could not decide to not serve their country.   It was against the rules of the society. He was found to be a person who also “worked in a factory and never got fired, but satisfied his employers, Fudge Motors, Inc.”   This man was also “popular with his mates and liked a drink.”   He was a friendly coworker, a good employer and married with five children, “which our Eugenist says was the right number for a parent of his generation.”   The researches into the public opinion were content due to the fact this man followed the rules of their society.   The collective identity of this unknown citizen was a good hardworking family man.   He served as an example of an excellent “Modern Man” and a very well respected member of their community.   Auden’s view of the government, depicted through...

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