The Inner Depths of a Damaged Soul

Authors have a variety of rhetorical decisions available to them to help them portray a damaged soul and how that soul got to be so damaged. In The Accidental Tourist by Anne Tyler, she makes all the correct decisions to create and mold a deeply complex individual known as Macon Leary. Tyler shrouds Macon Leary in a cloud of self loathing and misplaced anger, creating a solemn and somber tone throughout the beginning of the novel. This tone helps further the narrative of how Macon is completely and utterly damaged internally. Anne Tyler then displays how this internal damage manifests itself as hardships and evils in Macon’s life. An example of this is seen in the quote “But his study was so dim and close, and it gave off the salty inky smell of mental fidgeting”. Her use of diction creates this solemn tone which allows the reader to delve into Macon’s feelings of loss and damage. For my literary analysis paper, I will probably be most focused on how Anne Tyler creates Macon into this moody and damaged soul.
Anne Tyler’s ability for story telling combined with her ability to create complex and engaging characters allows for her to create a fascinating journey consisting of a lost and damaged soul. Every decision she makes story-wise is excellent; the structure of the story is very well crafted and the pacing of Macon’s maturity and internal recovery is very well thought out. I constantly find myself appraising her decisions throughout the book and they form to create a very riveting story.

Reflecting on “The Accidental Tourist”

The Accidental Tourist by Anne Tyler tells the story of Macon Leary, a middle aged man who has a divorce with his wife Sarah Leary. Macon is a very organized and meticulous individual whereas Sarah is very carefree and does not care for plans. The differences between them that they once loved started to drive their relationship apart and the murder of their son sent the marriage spiraling out of control.

The rest of the book goes on to describe Macon’s life after the divorce. Being devastated by the divorce, he starts to lose grip on himself and his health. Will he be able to recover and put his life back on track or will he fall down the chasm of despair and depression? Only reading the book will tell.