The moment before the gun went off: Van Der Vyer’s true identity Essay Sample

July 30, 2017 Philosophy

In Philosophy the word individuality is used to denominate a sense of ego that develops in the class of a man’s life and that both relates him to and sets him apart from his societal surroundings. To speak about our individuality. we try to reply the inquiry. “Who am I? ” . Identity gives us a location in the universe and presents the nexus between us and the society in which we live. We have different sorts of individuality: national individuality. societal individuality. cultural/racial individuality. category individuality. familial individuality. gender individuality. sexual individuality. etc. Some people say all these individualities are formed beyond our control. but I believe this non to be the instance. Society. political relations. and experiences can greatly act upon a person’s individuality but do non make a person’s true individuality. A believe a person’s individuality is under their immediate control. There is a person’s true personality and the 1 they choose to react to society with. This is true in the instance of Martin Van der Vyver a character of the short narrative “The Moment Before The Gun Went Off” written by writer Nadine Gordimer. “A narrative set in South Africa during the yearss of apartheid.

The narrative takes topographic point in South Africa. on Marais Van Dr Vyver’s big farm. presumptively in the 80’s or 90’s. Marais Van der Vyver is a white South African adult male of Dutch descent. the part Party leader and Commandant of the local security ranger. Van der Vyver is married to Alida. but has had a secret matter to a black adult female therefore resulted in a boy. Lucas. Lucas likely does non cognize that Van der Vyver is his male parent. or at least we are non told so in the text. Lucas is besides one of Van der Vyver’s black employees. One twenty-four hours. Van der Vyver took Lucas hunting ( as they had done several times before ) . Lucas stood back on the truck to indicate out the game. whilst Van der Vyver sat inside the cab with the rifle beside him.

The old rifle had one time belonged to his male parent. and since his male parent had a policy about non holding any laden guns in their house. Van der Vyver had taken the rifle out of the closet presuming it was non loaded. But he was incorrect. In exhilaration of descrying a koodoo. Van der Vyver drove instead fast over a pot hole. The jar caused the fire of the rifle. and the slug went through the roof of the truck and into Lucas’ caput that stood set over the roof. Lucas died by accident. but Van der Vyver had to give his statement of what happened at the constabulary office. cognizing that this would be reported all over the universe. That means that both he and his family’s lives are ruined. But neither the constabulary nor the media knew that Lucas was non merely Van der Vyver’s worker. he was his boy.

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T he narrative is told through the point of position of the husbandman. at first it seems that all the husbandman truly cares about is the negative promotion he will have. “Bad adequate to hold killed a adult male without assisting the party’s. the authoritiess. the country’s enemies as well” . He besides states that “They’ll ( Africans arising against apartheid regulation ) be able to utilize it in their boycott and divestment runs it’ll be another piece of grounds about the truth of this state. ” At first this seems as the right response from a protagonist of the Apartheid system but in truth these are non how Van Der Vyers’ genuinely feels.

As I have stated before I think people have their true individualities ( which they nay or may non take ) and the individualities they put out to society. Van Der Vyer is a politician. he must provide to the support of his party he is supposed to be an illustration of the ideals of his party. but in the act of holding an illicit boy during an epoch where it is offense shows that he himself in secret cares really small about the ideals of the Apartheid Party but the universe sees him as an open truster in the Apartheid system. For one thing when he states he is “terribly shocked” and he will “look after the married woman and children” this is the true Van Der Vyer talking out of heartache. but because of him passing his life with a false individuality know one believes him because they seem as an apartheid protagonist “they think all inkinesss are like bigmouth fomenters in town” . The fact is if he truly believed in all the party’s ideals He would hold been nowhere near a Black adult female and have an illicit boy.

It seems even though there were rigorous regulations in the society Van Der Vyer had a direct individuality antonym of what he was purportedly to hold. In fact you make Call Van Der Vyer a weak adult male for non being his true ego. The lone thing that does convey out his true features ironically is the decease of his boy a black kid. Vyer is so shaken up with heartache that the constabulary officer he confessed the accident to was embarrassed to see Vyer’s nonstop crying. “He sobbed. snob running onto his custodies. like a soiled kid” . “The captain was ashamed of him. and walked out to give him a opportunity to retrieve himself.

We can reasonably much assume that Vyer’s was saddened by the decease of his boy. Vyer in secret genuinely cared for his boy. If he had in fact merely satisfied his sexual desires on a random black adult female who bore his kid he would hold wanted nil to make with his boy allow entirely engaging the male child to work on his farm and learn him the art of mechanics while traveling runing with him now and so. he treated Lucas every bit much as a boy as he could hold without acquiring himself known. any other ego esteeming racialist would hold kept the male child far off from him or paid the female parent to remain off. Equally far as we know it is a common apprehension between the female parent and the Vyers to maintain it a secret. For one thing she could hold announced the secret at Lucas ; funeral in forepart of Vyer’s married woman and the whole community. but it seems to hold adequate regard for him non to destruct his name even though he shot her Son.

If you can see between the lines you can see Vyers’ true individuality an individuality that he has chosen to conceal in favour of a strong apartheid leader. We can presume if he was willing he could hold acted in A wholly different manner opposing societies influences on him but he choose to “follow the times” he lived in and conceal his true nature. The concluding piece of Evidence is when he is believing of the alterations recently in the Government and the repelling of the immorality Act that forbade Blacks and Whites from kiping together he thinks “it’s non even a offense anymore” . This is a tragically dry statement which shows that he grieves the fact that if it was merely that manner twenty old ages ago he could hold had a different life with his boy. His public life was non the consequence of his ain pick ( which is what dictates the individuality of a individual ) but a basic response to the political system of the clip.


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