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2016FallSymposiumURCreativityEngagement has ended
Tuesday, December 6 • 11:15am - 11:35am
The Characterization Of Henry Lightcap In Edward Abbey's Novel 'The Fool's Progress'

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This project examines the characterization of Henry Lightcap in Edward Abbey’s novel The Fool’s Progress by attending not merely to Abbey’s environmental activism but also his interest in philosophy. His written testimonies and the observations of biographers since his death have affirmed that Abbey was mostly inspired by his passion for wilderness preservation and his collegiate studies of various philosophies. The plot of The Fool’s Progress centers on Henry Lightcap, a middle-aged man who shares many of Abbey’s own sentiments and experiences, and who embarks on a cross-country road trip back to his hometown, revisiting significant memories of his youth along the way. It is obvious, to the reader, that Henry’s actions often contradict his ideals, but it is not so obvious that the dualisms of his emotions and intellect act as catalysts for his character development. This study considers the possibility that the narrator, Lightcap, embodies the contradictions of American ideology versus the actualities of American ‘progress’.


Tuesday December 6, 2016 11:15am - 11:35am
232 Karpen Hall