Ragtime Escape

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Escape Everyone is not in the same situation financially, mentally, or physically. People do things that they think make the most sense to them, and when they perform a certain action they do it because they think it is for the best. In Ragtime, Doctorow thought escape encapsulated the early 20th US century because it is a recurring theme shown throughout every situation in the book. Throughout the novel, Doctorow refers to the character's search for meaning and stability. I agree that during this time period life was hard for many and all people wanted was an escape route. E. L. Doctorow stresses the fact that there is only one thing that is constant in the world, and that is change. People have trouble dealing with change, and that is why…show more content…
He escaped handcuffs, ropes, vaults, cabinets, chains and a number of other things. All of his escapes show how he is physically capable of escaping imprisonment. However, when it comes to his emotions, he has no escape. Houdini’s grief from his mother’s death shows how he cannot take pride in any of his accomplishments because his mind is always on her. He was very close with his mother, and it almost seemed that he was too attached to her. Houdini couldn’t find an escape from her death. He tried to turn to spiritualism in order to hear his mother's dying words, but he just got stuck even deeper in his emotional entanglement. Concluding that, the only escape for Houdini’s emotional problems is death. Houdini’s significant role that Doctorow shows is that escape is there, but if you can’t look in the right place, you won’t find it. Therefore, the beginning and end of his quest for answers will only be given to him through his final escape,…show more content…
The characters show how change is not something they are fond of. Father feels helpless and divided by his family when he returns from his expedition because of all of the new changes and developments. He doesn’t like the new rights women have, or the independence Mother has now obtained. However, the characters who are accepting of change are Mother and Tateh. They embrace the new changes and carry themselves on in life with the new developments pushing them forward. Mother, finds her freedom and responsibilities with her new rights and is able to prosper in Father’s absence. Therefore, some characters adjusted better than other, they still all longed for an escape route in some other

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