Analysis of "The Use of Force"

1136 words 5 pages
Taylor Wilson
Mr. McKinnon
English 1001
13 September 2011
Analysis of “The Use of Force”

Williams Carlos Williams applies both internal and external conflict to his short story,” The Use of Force.” The narrator struggles with how he should help cure an ill but stubborn child. Is he acting forceful because he is trying to help the patient, or is he actually enjoying being malicious towards her? To make a short story even shorter, this story is about a doctor who was called by a sick child’s parents to come diagnose the young girl. Throughout the story the little girl refuses to let the doctor come anywhere close to examining her. No matter how much the parents try to calm the child down, they seem to make the situation even worse.
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Deep down she knew that the cure for her sore throat would not be all that pleasant. Her actions were what made the story so interesting, and gave the doctor an excuse to use force trying to cure her.
The time and place somewhat matter in this story. At this time when diphtheria is going around, risking the lives of the children in the town. It is the early 1990’s, so medicine is not as advanced s it is today. This is causing external and internal conflict in the story. The disease spreading is an example of the external conflict. The fear of the children dying from this illness is an example of internal conflict, in all four characters.
I approve of the doctor’s actions, because he is just trying to do his job. Its not his fault the girl is behaving the way she is. He was called by the parents to do whatever he can to help cure their child. If that means be mean and aggressive with her, then that is what needed to be done. The doctor had already seen a couple of children die from diphtheria, and he didn’t want this patient to be the third one to die due to neglect.
Williams Carlos Williams was a medical doctor at the time of the early 1900’s, and he specialized in pediatrics. He mainly dealt with working class patients. Maybe the “Use of Force” was an actual situation he had experienced as his time as a doctor. In the story the doctor treated a young girl of a working class family. The doctor’s thoughts in the book


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