How Does Jack Delillo Create Identity In White Noise

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Don DeLillo’s “White Noise” is a novel that follows the life of Jack Gladney and his family, a teacher of “Hitler studies”. The storyline captures their journey through life that is constantly occupied by white noise: the buzz of American consumerism. “White Noise” trails the Gladney family and their company’s struggle to live life by attempting to distract themselves from the reality around them. Exploring the profound and fundamental reservations and fears that prevent them from truly unraveling who they really are, the story captures the family’s inability to know their true identity because of a constant fear of the unknown. Jack Gladney, the protagonist, continually distracts himself from realizing his individuality. By not allowing himself to discover his own identity, life remains a mystery to him and he thrives off of that experience. Adding to the mystery of life is the mystery of death. Jack’s obsession with death is evident throughout the novel, he states, “the deepest regret is death. This is all I think about”(270).…show more content…
For example, he attempts to set a new record for sitting in an enclosed cage with an abundance of deadly venomous snakes. When speaking about the subject of death by being bit by one of the snakes, he states, "at least I will go right away and die within a few seconds. (198)." Although he accepts death, Orest still has identity problems. When he fails to set the new record, he goes into hiding. So embarrassed by this failure, it’s obvious that he would have rather died in that cage shamelessly than survive the way he did. Death isn’t what drives Orest away from discovering his true self, it’s society that holds him back. Society is filled with boundaries. Society tells him what is acceptable for him to do and what isn’t acceptable for him to do. It is these limitations on his life that causes him to not know his

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