Analysis Dr Heidegger — страница 2
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one can pass on their wisdom to the youth of the age. It is also important to realize that they may not have even been young again. Maybe it was just their imagination running wild, due to the intoxicating fluids Dr. Heidegger gave them. Or perhaps they just believed that they were young, so that they felt young. The power of the human mind should never be doubted. Hypochondriacs are a perfect example of this, they can think themselves ill. One can set their mind to anything, including becoming young again. Were these people truly young? Were these people even living? As is typical with Hawthorne, everything is described in a hazy state, so that the reader is unsure and must make his or her own assumptions. It is undoubtedly certain that they felt young, and believed that they were young again. However, it is unlikely that they were actually young again. It seems rather foolish to believe such a fountain could exist. Never knowing whether or not these people are old living people, or dead beings revived with spirits, it is hard to assume a position in analysis of the story. Although the ‘death’ theory is a good and plausible one, perhaps there are other ways to see the same story. One view in particular is that of the importance of youth. At the beginning of the story Dr. Heidegger wants to watch the four old people and see what happens when they drink the Water of Youth. It appears that he is interested in the after effects of youth, to see if youth is worth having again. He shows how the water effects the rose, and allows it to return to its youthful state, and then invites the four people to enjoy the same return to youth. While drinking the Water of Youth, the old people feel young and lively, and they return to their old habits of youthful rivalry over beauty. The doctor watches and learns from them that youth is not all that it seems. In the end he tells them that no matter what, he would never drink from the fountain of youth because it would only return him to his old habits and ways. As is displayed with the butterfly, when the vase is broken, and the Water of Youth is spilled on the floor, the people return to their horrid elderly state of death, and want only to be young again. Looking at the story from either perspective gives the impression that people should value youth, learn from their experiences, and enjoy their old age and wisdom. Although the four old people do not learn from their experiences, the readers should, and hopefully will learn that there is more to life then being vain and ignorant.