The Heart is a Lonely Hunter Essay

The Heart Is a Lonely Hunter
Carson McCullers crafted a literary masterpiece when she was only twenty three named, The Heart Is a Lonely Hunter. Her amazing debut novel starts with the simple life of a death-mute named John Singer, but then spirals into the many commensal relationships he has with a small Georgia town and four other dynamic characters.
The title, The Heart Is a Lonely Hunter, is very beautiful and poetic in nature. However, it has more than a ring to it. It is the heart of the story and an ongoing metaphor for the charactersí lives. John Singer, Biff Brannon, Mick Kelly, Dr. Copeland, and Jake Blount are all hunters on the prowl for the things they desire the most; fulfillment in ideas, values, and even other people. They always hunt alone, which makes them very lonely in the southern Georgia town.
The themes of the story leap off of every page, and in turn give the reader a better understanding of the characters themselves and their lives. The first theme, man versus isolation, plays into the title. Being that the five main characters are all lonely hunters their isolation is something that plagues them for different reasons. John Singer cannot communicate with others due to him being a death mute; Mick Kelly cannot communicate with others because of her advanced and creative mind; Biff Brannon is naturally very reserved but with his wifeís death causes his isolation to grow; Dr. Copeland is cut off from society and even his family because of his radical views, extremely high standards for other African Americans, and his education level; Jake Blountís isolation spawns from his radical political views of socialism and anti-capitalism. Their loneliness eats at them and presents their desire for someone who will understand. All five of the characters, except for Biff Brannon, confide in Singer the roots of their loneliness and find comfort, understanding, and wisdom. Biff is not the kind of kind of person that is very open or vocal with his feelings, but he still finds those cherished qualities in Singer. The second theme, religion as self-delusion, is just as prominent and important as the first. The story doesnít really harp on one specific religion or god. However it does explore ones need to idolize something or someone. John Singer became the thing that all the other characters idolized. They put Singer on a pedestal and saw him as a define figure, something like a false god. They came to him in times of trouble and believed that with his unending wisdom he could erase their self-doubts and fears. Each character saw their own god, and their own divine light in Singer. For Mick saw someone who finally understood her creativity with music; For Dr. Copeland saw the only person who was enlightened and who understood his passion for making the black community better; Biff saw someone that he had a lot in common with, being that they are both quiet and let rely more on their thinking than wonders; Jakes saw someone who shares the same political views on the world. Sadly Singer was actually none of the things. He was just a simple and quiet individual that had great manners and hospitality. Ironically Singer also held a certain blind following and faith in someone. Singer idolized his friend Antonapoulous, and held him in the same esteem of a god. He saw his only real friend that carried the same burden and lifestyle as he did. Even though Antonapoulous did very little to contribute to their friendship, being that he was very selfish and lazy in nature. The last theme that isnít as wide spread or recognizable in the story is the act of Heroism. John Singer and Mick Kelly were the only ones who were able to show unselfish and genuine love for another person. John Singer loved his friend Antonapoulous unwaveringly without really getting that love in return. Their friendship was a testament to Singers selfless heart. Mick Kelly shows the same kind of unwavering, genuine, and strong love for her younger brother Bubber even after they grow apart. Mick Kelly grows into an even bigger heroine when she quits school in order