All the King's Men - the Dialectical Journal

Passage 1: In this first passage the author describes the scenic views of the rolling countryside as he and Willie Stark drive to Mason City for some quick press photos at Willies old house. The author spends a great deal of time in this passage detailing the landscape and introducing figures. The entire passage reminds me of the time in which I was driving out to Arizona this summer with my family.

Our drive as was the one in the book was highly defined by the apparition of rolling country hills, thick forestry, and a surreal sort of feeling that hung over the car's atmosphere. As in the book were the main character Jack Burden pondered issues of his life as he gazed at the scenery I did the same thing. Over the drive I examined things in life and thought about whom I wanted to be and where I wanted to go in my life. Passage 2: In this passage Willie Stark arrives at Judge Irwin's home to question the judge on why he has decided to endorse a man running against another man that Willie has groomed for the position state senate.

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Willie threatens the well being of the judges family and his job by saying that Jack Burden will dig up some dirt on him and stick it to him if he does not endorse Willies candidate. The judge reacts bitterly toward this and throws Willie out of the house. This passage reflects the corruptness of politics in my eyes. Here there is a man whom has retracted an endorsement of another man due to the clear fact that he is the wrong man for the job. Then comes a political bully (Willie) whom clearly threatens the man into endorseing his candidate.

Still the Judge refuses and then in doing so puts his job and credibility to risk at the hands of a political bully. Passage 3: This passage recalls an event that rose Willie to fame in his local home. A contract was being given out to the highest bidder to build a new school in Mason City. Willie voted for the contract to be given to a well respected but lower bidder contractor. The higher up city officials did not like Willies plan and spread rumors that this lower bidder would import black labor. Being the middle of Red-neck country the town voted against Willies idea.

This portrays once more the sad trodden over under dog in politics. The man whom was the lower bidder was a better contractor for the job because one could tell that he would not shirk responsibility and spend less money on the school than which was need to make it safe. However the higher bidders had friends in senior places in the state senate and were of course richer. This displays how even with the best intentions in life and politics there is always one out there who will play dirtier than you and do whatever it takes to ensure their way is the only way accepted by the people.

Passage 4: This is a disheartening passage in which the higher bidder for the building of the new school in the passage before had paid for faulty building structure ( as Willie expected) to keep more revenue from the project for himself. Then during a fire drill at the school a fire escape collapsed due to poor construction and killed three students. At the funeral for the boys a father approached Willie saying that he had been punished by god for voting against an honest man. Willie then became a local hero.

This passage relates the simple theme in many children's books and such that the nice guys don't always have to finish last. Although the accident was terrible it turned around the town and made people start viewing the higher up officials of their town as more corrupt politicians. Passage 5: This passage once again reflects on Willies younger years as he works on his father farm by the day and at night he attends law classes and stays up late at night to work on his law studies.

He studies diligently until one day he finally takes the state bar exam. Willie ends up passing with flying colors and receives a license to practice law. Willie with more strenuous work opens up his first law firm and begins his rise to fame. Through this passage I feel that the author is trying to say that hard work and diligent studies will in the end help one prevail over all their dreams and accomplish all their hopes. Although Willie at this point in his political career was shunned by all for past positions he had held regarding ity finances he continued to strive toward acceptance by his political peers and eventually won it. Passage 6: This is an interesting passage because it reflects more upon the past of jack burden rather than Willie. Jack was an extraordinary Historian and had been trying for a doctorates in American History however he ended up walking away from it for many reasons including pressure. This is then tied into Jack once again walking away from his rather prosperous job at the town newspaper The Chronicle.

Jack calls these times in which he gives up these goals of his A Great Sleep, because all he does during the weeks following is sleep and piddle around his homes as well as found love interests with a local girl. Through this passage the character of Jack reminds me of a sort of in directional kind of person whom has no idea what he really wants with his life and can't seem to make up his mind so he goes into a sort of glazed existence of dating, sleeping, and meandering about the town.

It seems to be his only way to deal with possibly a sort of disappointment he has over himself. Passage 7: This passage follows Jack as he goes to visit his mother. While at his mother and step-fathers mansion he recalls his happiness and serenity of before; when his mother and biological father were together and had lived happily until his father gave up all his wealth to become a more in touch religious man. His mother left him and then proceeded to mary a succession of wealthy men. This reminds me of some sort of TV. how in which the family is burdened with a loss of the husband so the mother Maries off to rich men to regain wealth that had been lost with the husband. The whole passage is as if it was a soap opera in fact. Passage 8: In this passage Jack Burden is forced to entertain a young woman named Miss Dumonde while at a dinner party. The young woman although pretty irritates him incessantly. This reminds me of a time in which I have gone to correlations or ceremonies regarding my father's duties in the air force.

Over these times I sometimes have been stuck babysitting of sorts children younger than me when I would much rather sit at the table in which my father and mother do and listen remotely to the conversations attempting to stay aloof in the surroundings. Passage 9: This passage goes heavily in debt into the feelings of Cass Master a Great Uncle of Jack Burden. Jack had been doing a dissertation for his PhD on the papers written by Cass however simply and rather precariously in my opinion gave up and left. He did this quite simply because he was confused with the emotions of this man that were displayed in his actions written in the papers.

He felt perplexed about certain actions Cass took to leave his wife and pursue a slave whom had been sold away by the women he had had an affair with and then when here husband found out committed suicide. Cass then pursued the slave women because she was the only one whom knew of the affair and the suicide that was covered up as an accident. Cass gave up following the slave due to an injury he had received in a fight along the way and simply as Jack did with his dissertation left and then joined the Confederate army to fight in the Civil war.

This passage I think is meant to display a sort of unwillingness to commit to juices in his life when things get to complicated to him or simply conflict with personal feelings. One can also see this in Jack's great uncle as well, perhaps it is a hereditary thing because it is also shown in Jack's father when he gives up his tycoon business and starts become a devout religious man. Passage 10: This passage picks up where the last one left off; after Jack quite working for his PhD in American History.

In it Jack leaves his apartment one day never to return, what he leaves is his unfinished dissertation on his great uncle. It is abandoned then shipped to jack by the landlord; not to be opened over the course of the time in which he has a wife, divorces, and over the time the package's yellow color fades and his name written on it rubs away. I think the author has written this passage to show jack's disorientation with the situation and inability to deal with it as he allows his past to deteriorate along with his ambitions. Passage 11: This passage is sort of an eye-opener for Jack.

After finishing some blackmail for Willie on the Judge he then goes to the Judge's estate to finish off the blackmail but the judge in a vain attempt to be an honorable man does not falter from the blackmail and give in to Willies political scheming. When Jack leaves and heads to his mother and step fathers home he finds his mom on the floor crying with the telephone dangling from the hook. She tells Jack that the Judge has just shot himself in the heart and Jack soon learns that the Judge was in fact his true biological father.

Jack in both realizing he has driven his true father into suicide goes to Willie and tells him he is quitting blackmailing Willies competitors forever. This is a reckoning for Jack and helps him finally put down the fears he has and grief over what he has done in his work for Willie. Passage 12: The story wraps up with Jack marrying a girl whom he had had fraternizing occasions with for some time named Anne. They together move into the Judges estate which was left to him after the judge's untimely suicide.

During the time they spend in the house Jack sets to work and completes his studies of Cass Master finally feeling as though he can understand the man's emotions with the ones that he himself has felt over the past few years. This is a sort of ideal ending to the book and is kind of predictable, however I would not want the story to end in any other fashion because I feel that it does a spectacular job of wrapping up and surmising the entire drama with a piece from the beginning of it.

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