FINAL SECOND - 1 Jacob Zipperstein 2nd Paper To Puppeteer a Child In the History of Danish Dreams Peter Heg brilliantly incorporates the idea of

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2 nd Paper 4/20/10 To Puppeteer a Child In the History of Danish Dreams , Peter Høeg brilliantly incorporates the idea of fate and free will by analyzing the relationships between his parent and child protagonists. In each generation, excluding Mad and Madelene’s, every parent deems it necessary to exert power and control over their children. It becomes vividly clear – through the interactions between Thorvald and Anna, Amalie and Carsten, and Anna and Maria – that the children’s destinies are being dictated and restricted by their parents. Nevertheless, the children still find opportunities to regain control over their life, whether it is by sneaking out into a forbidden area or disobeying a direct order. Fortunately, Maria and Carsten realize the negative implications that controlling a child’s life have and allow their children to direct their own destinies. Høeg implies that this is the dominant way to parent a child, for all three parents in the earlier generations consequently react to their own shortcomings. The first relationship where the motif of dictating a child’s life becomes evident is between Thorvald Bak – the newfound pastor of Lavnæs – and his daughter, Anna. Høeg introduces Anna as being the “new messiah” because of her extraordinary ability to split into two people. Thorvald and the townspeople first witness this phenomenon while at the shoemaker’s deathbed. Upon this incident, Anna is hoisted onto a “wagon and placed on an improvised throne” (pg. 76). Anna, unaware of her miracles and the expectations of others, continues to innocently live her life and produces nothing more than a faint smile 1
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when confronted by a crowd of followers. Thorvald, however, recognizes that Anna has been created for some higher purpose. His decision to start dictating Anna’s life becomes apparent after he becomes speechless with amazement at hearing his daughter pray. Her words “flowed like music and the congregation saw tears glinting like pearls in the light from her face” (pg. 79). Thorvald, engrossed in the idea that Anna is to become the messiah, takes many precautions in order to prevent her from harms way. On the off chance she is to hurt herself, he exempts her from all forms of physical labor only to realize this amount of protection will not suffice. He quickly has a gold chain forged for her neck – the other end of the chain fastened tightly to his wrist. Eventually, he orders a silver-plated cage and locks up Anna in an attempt to further protect her and to “stifle the elusive element in her nature” (pg. 81). Anna, still being an innocent child, puts up with this new rearrangement without arguing. With his daughter safely out of immediate danger,
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This note was uploaded on 09/04/2010 for the course CHEM 10966 taught by Professor Vollhardt during the Spring '10 term at University of California, Berkeley.

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FINAL SECOND - 1 Jacob Zipperstein 2nd Paper To Puppeteer a Child In the History of Danish Dreams Peter Heg brilliantly incorporates the idea of

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