Character Analysis: No Country For Old Men

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With the growth of technology, higher learning, and new ideals, society has a tendency to change. The current generation thrives off of society’s new transformation, while the older generations must adapt to the new change in order to survive the dynamic world. Cormac McCarthy illustrates the ordeal of surviving in the modernized “Wild West” in his novel, No Country for Old Men. McCarthy tells the story of Llewellyn Moss, a young hunter who finds a suitcase with around two million dollars. Moss secures his family and the newly found money. Additionally, Moss is chased by a psychopathic killer named Anton Chigurh, who also wants the money. In between the madness is Ed Tom Bell, a local Texas sheriff who is unsuccessful at saving Moss’s life…show more content…
Drugs. Suicide… when I say anything about how the world is goin to hell in a handbasket people will just sort of smile and tell me I'm gettin old… anybody that cant tell the difference between rapin and murderin people and chewin gum has got a whole lot bigger of a problem than what I've got. (McCarthy 196) Bell is able to see the change that has happened to Terrell County and its people. When everyone tells Bell to calm down and let it go, Bell refuses to accept what is acceptable in society. This will ultimately lead to his downfall when Bell continues to pursue Moss and Chigurh. Overall, the setting sets up Sheriff Bell for his revelation that he cannot do anything to change what time can only…show more content…
Sheriff Bell, as a dedicated sheriff, has stood strong against any and all kinds of lawbreakers in Terrell County, and he is aware that “you had to be willin’ to die to even do this job” (McCarthy 2). The public views Bell as the same brave, old lawman that would not rest until their home is under the protection the law; however, the people did not see what change the sheriff is undergoing. Even if he is willing to sacrifice his life, he still feels useless and labels himself as a quitter. All these feelings are exposed when Bell comes across a more modernized, unfamiliar foe, Anton Chigurh. During his prime as a sheriff, he has never met an outlaw similar to Chigurh. Chigurh is a cold blood killer who uses an advance weapon that operators as a silent shotgun. Sheriff Bell has neither been exposed to the horrifying weapon nor has confronted a man who completely disregards human life the way Chigurh does. As the novel processes, Sheriff Bell begins to doubt his ability to protect Moss when he admitted, “bad people can't be governed at all” (McCarthy 33). Sheriff Bell feels that he had reached the point in his life time where he could not move on as a man of law as his confidence is fading away. In the end of the novel, Sheriff accepts utter defeat, but has to learn it the hard

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