In from rabbits. This said, Charlottes behaviour in
In light of the description of anthropomorphism, I think it is only fitting to use the novels Charlottes Web and Watership Down to demonstrate them.
While both of these novels show animals behaving in different manners, they are both uncharacteristic of normal animal behaviour. Charlottes Web shows animals behaviour as primarily human while Watership Down demonstrates animals behaving mostly as animals. This said, we see that both these novels show their characters with human traits, however they are all confined to their physical limitations as animals. A perfect example of this is Charlotte, from Charlottes Web.
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However the activities, physical and mental, actions and behaviour demonstrated by the rabbits in Watership Down are typically the things that humans would expect from rabbits. This said, Charlottes behaviour in Charlottes Web, is what we might expect to see from a human being. Her spinning of the web with a word or two in it is not common activities for spiders. While examining the animals actions, partially sheds light on the stories that we are reading. It helps unravel the ideas and advance the plot.
It does not however, give us insight into the behaviour, specifically the god-like actions that demonstrate anthropomorphism in both these novels. While all the characters in both these novels are earthly there is usually at least one in each that has some God-like character traits. The anthropomorphism that we see in Charlotte is the prime example being examined from both novels. While Charlotte is Wilburs savior and protector, she is still only a spider. White does not give her the physical ability to do things that a spider cannot normally do. Therefore, she must save Wilbur in a way that makes it possible for a spider to do. She spins a web that becomes a miracle, which in turn saves Wilbur from his almost uncertain death.
The thought of that is nonsensical within itself. How could a spider have the brainpower to devise such a clever plan to save her friend? This is where White returns to the idea of animals behaving as humans.While Charlotte is only a spider, she uses the ability that she has (spinning webs) to demonstrate some human actions. The ability to spin a web in such words as Some Pig. While to a child this might not seem to be as thought provoking as adults make it out to be, it is.
The behavior that Charlotte exhibits is the single action that saves Wilbur life for the second time the first time that Wilburs life was saved was by Fern. Although the reasons that Fern Saved Wilburs life was for very different reasons that Charlottes. As examined in the reading pack, Fern was going through a stage in her life where little girls like to mother and care for smaller and needier objects.Charlotte is a very different character with very different motives. Charlotte saves Wilbur because of the person that she is.
It is in her inherent mothering nature, as well it demonstrates her martyrdom. She uses her abilities as a spider to save Wilbur’s life. In doing so she is not able to live her life to the fullest.
She recognizes that spiders live short lives, regardless of their actions. She disregards this thought to save Wilbur. By the end of the novel her actions have come full circle. In the final chapter of the story, Charlotte passes away and it is up to Wilbur to take care on and educate her children. In her sacrifice she becomes a saint. Giving of herself and eventually her life for the good of others.
The characters in Watership Down are an interesting comparison for Charlottes Web. Charlottes Web was written many years before Watership Down. While all the characters in Watership Down are all rabbits and subsequently behave as such. They do not seem to have extraordinary talents and abilities, the way the animals in Charlottes Web do. They have a society that governs them as rabbits but their behaviour has no affect on the outside world, especially human characters.
That is the main visible difference between the two novels.Our protagonist, Hazel, has a younger brother Fiver. Fiver was the runt of the litter and its constantly being watched over by Hazel. While in the does provide us with some early insight into the characters, it is not till much later on that we are given a full scope off all the characters and their behaviour. This said that it takes us almost to the completion of the book to have a greater understanding of the characters and their roles in their rabbit society.