Thematic Analysis Of Marissa Havens' Non-fiction Novel Boys In The Boat
Competing in the Olympics Is the boys way of showing the world how they overcame depression and won against the Nazis. Hitler’s attempts to be victorious by hosting the 1936 Berlin Olympics nevertheless the American rowing team won Hitler’s Third Reich was creative in using the Olympics for its own political ends, conning hundreds of thousands of visitors into thinking of Germany as a peaceful and trustworthy country.
The author highlights that rowing is a challenging sport, not only because of its physical stress but because it requires the boys to have significant concentration. Rowing was treated as a well loved American sport, even more liked than basketball, football, or baseball. As a result, rowing was seen as a test of one’s intelligence, character, and strength. To the boys rowing was more than just a fun activity it was a Signal of hope at a time when the country didn’t have a lot to look forward to.
Because rowing is such a cooperative sport it becomes really important for the team to develop an unbreakable bond of trust and affection. Brown indicated that Joe’s success as a rower not in hatred of his humble origins but because of them, he had so much experience coping with the mental strain of abandonment that he knew how to focus on the task at hand and focus on succeeding.
Another major theme of The Boys in the Boat is class, and significantly the conflict between totally different socioeconomic categories. The book takes place throughout the Great Depression, an era when the collapse of the stock market and therefore the decline of industry threatened to wipe out the middle class. Several families that had never wanted for food were thrust into poverty for the first time.
At a school like the University of Washington, where the book is set, the divide between the wealthiest and the poorest Americans was significantly stark. A number of the university’s students had never worked a day in their lives, whereas others, like Joe Rantz, may only be university students because they’d previously been operating regular jobs. Through the character of Joe Rantz, Daniel James Brown studies the bullying and discrimination that working-class Americans typically have to endure, and how some Americans succeeded in overcoming their abuse.
At the University of Washington, Joe encountered endless class discrimination. He came from a poor family, and he had to support himself since the age of fifteen, often working full-time just to feed himself and put a roof over his head. On the other hand, some of his classmates came from wealthy families, and had no experience working for a living. They teased Joe for his frumpy clothing, his unpolished manners, and other things that signified his working-class roots. Joe was particularly conscious of the divide between upper-class and working-class as a member of the university rowing team.
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