Alice Munro's The Shining Houses

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The Shining Houses Human beings live what seems to be normal lives with normal people every day, whether it be at work, school or within neighborhoods. However, humans, also have a tendency to have a darker side, perhaps it was a bully on the playground, and maybe a co-worker was unkind and selfish. In Alice Munro’s “The Shining Houses”, the residents of a seemingly normal neighborhood criticize the house of an elderly woman, Mrs. Fullerton for being dirty, undesirable and detrimental to the real estate of the neighborhood. The residents have a meeting in order to discuss what they would do to get rid of Mrs. Fullerton, in order to save their neighborhood. Mary is repentant and does not feel the need to kick out an elderly woman, however the…show more content…
It is an undeniable fact that the residents have selfish intentions. Though the residents acknowledge and address the fact that Mrs. Fullerton has lived not only in the residence longer, but has also lived a longer life they still feel that they are in the right, in fact Carl states “She’s been here for forty years, now we’re here […] So it goes. And whether you realize it or not, just standing there that house is bringing down the resale value of every house on this street. I’m in the business, I know.” (6). though Carl acknowledges the fact that Mrs. Fullerton was there longer, he still believes that since they are here now, and that Mrs. Fullerton is bringing down property value, they are somehow entitled to kicking Mrs. Fullerton out. Furthermore, these neighbors do not care about what is said, the collective anger has brought them together. “And these were joined by other voices; it did not matter much what they said as long as they were full of self-assertion and anger. That was their strength, proof of their adulthood, of themselves and their seriousness” (6). The text proves that it does not matter who said what or how strong the argument of anyone is, as long as their voices are filled with anger and self-entitlement. The selfishness of the residents reveal a truly dark side of human nature, as they are willing to stop at nothing in order to remove Mrs. Fullerton, and simultaneously increase their property

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