Five Faces Of Oppression By Iris Young Analysis

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“When a man is denied the right to live the life he believes in, he has no choice but to become an outlaw.” said Nelson Mandela. Many people, perhaps most, steadfastly, but in a slightly imprudent manner believe that they are free; yet the freedom which people think of is superficial. In fact, most of us are living the lives which our society has deliberately shaped for us-the one that does not principally comply with our choices, whereas the real freedom is the freedom to be, that is to be able to experience and show one’s true self. In “Five Faces of Oppression” Iris Young accentuates the idea that “Human beings are the only creatures that can oppress themselves”. If a person represses his own desires and needs because they are…show more content…
One of them, the captain is a masculine man of 40, though secluded from the normal life of soldiers and unmarried, who bears covert homoerotic desire and deep, obsessive interest in his orderly. He frequently harasses his orderly due to his open and confident behavior and treats him violently because only doing so, he is able to assuage his strange passion toward the young soldier. The younger man, Schoner, is a German soldier, whose youthful and lusty appearance is “like a warm flame on the older man’s tense, rigid body.” (Lawrence 2). There emerges a serious conflict between the two soldiers, who are locked in a deadly battle between their minds and body. The molestation and violence of the officer consequently engender veritable indignation at the young man, for whom the relentless efforts of the captain to divest him of his individual freedom and self respect are not comprehensible at all. Afterwards, when left alone with him, Schoner has an opportunity to assail the officer and break his neck. So he does, after fighting his ambivalent feelings, as his fervent desire for vengeance preponderates over the brutal dichotomy of his mind and body. Then, not knowing what to do, the young man leaves the captain’s inert body and escapes into the forest, tussling with what he has done. Eventually, exertion renders him sick and he is thereupon found by other soldiers. Schoner dies sometime after and the story ends describing his’ and his captain’s dead bodies lying next to each other at the hospital (Lawrence,

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