The Mosquito Coast
Navigating the Global explores the challenges and complexities confronted by individuals embarking on a quest for a greater meaning in their lives.
The concept of globalization is an ever growing understanding of the complexities and challenges of the late 20th to 21st century world where the increase in technology and communication has lead to the homogenization of cultural values. The concept of navigating through these complexities is referred to by critic T. Friedman as “An inevitable process of western civilization battling forces of primitivism and localism” Which can be seen in the 1981 novel The Mosquito Coast (TMC) by Paul Theroux and the 2007 film Into the wild directed by Sean Penn (ITW) demonstrates the consequences brought by
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Paralleled within TMC the destructive consequences of over indulgence in Western culture can be seen through the figures of Chris’ parents, Walt McCandless and Billie McCandless whose manifestations of academic success and wealth results in an unstable relationship ”The divorce never happened,but the battles and the meetings never stopped.” The montage of celebration along with the non diegetic narration of the events highlights the superficiality of their connections as they indulge further into westernized values “the careerism and money seemed only to embolden their blindness.” In contrast, the relationship between Gene Rosellini and Jan Burres demonstrates a stable relationship through adoption of the hybrid values of the local and the global, emphasised by the cross cutting of the McCandless “to find yourself at least once in the most ancient of human conditions with nothing to help you but your hands and your own head”
Allie’s failed quest for meaning in Honduras and his regression into “savagery” as he transforms into “a live scarecrow, the wild man” , is reflected in Charlie’s description of the river as he continuously attempts to move further upstream “The river bubbled and streamed with decay” which