The Devolution of Man: Animalistic Sexual Desire in Tobacco Road and Child of God

Both Caldwell’s Tobacco Road and McCarthy’s Child of God concern themselves with quintessential poor white people. Tobacco Road follows the Lester family, a poor family on the outskirts of town, struggling for food and money during the Great Depression, whereas Child of God follows Lester Ballard, a man who lost his land and subsequently loses … Read moreThe Devolution of Man: Animalistic Sexual Desire in Tobacco Road and Child of God

Local Perspective in Cormac McCarthy’s Child of God

“The strangeness of the story of Lester Ballard, the child of God, begins not with its subject matter but with the way the story is told.” Vereen Bell, The Achievement of Cormac McCarthy In his 1991 essay, Andrew Bartlett suggests Cormac McCarthy’s Child of God “derives not so much from the force of Lester Ballard … Read moreLocal Perspective in Cormac McCarthy’s Child of God

The Mascot- Lester Ballard as the Southern Other

Tennessee Williams once said “If people behaved in the way nations do, they would all be put in straightjackets.” Nowhere can this be more clearly seen than in the case of Lester Ballard from Cormac McCarthy’s Child of God. Lester Ballard, through his dispossession, violence, and sexual deviance, is an allegory for Southern culture, an … Read moreThe Mascot- Lester Ballard as the Southern Other

The Exemplification of Freudian Sexual Development in McCarthy’s Child of God

In Child of God, Cormac McCarthy presents readers with the story of Lester Ballard, a young man abandoned by and expelled from society. Ballard’s is a gothic tale overflowing with depravity, libidinal pressure, necrophilia, and psychopathy, yet it is also a testament to the ways in which a society can create monsters out of men. … Read moreThe Exemplification of Freudian Sexual Development in McCarthy’s Child of God