Discovering the Loss of the Creature

“The Loss of the Creature” Percy’s topic of loss comes through numerous times in his essay

Essay on The Loss of Creature by Walker Percy 1570 Words | 7 Pages

Give an example or examples from “The Loss of the Creature” in order to support your analysis.
Show that you understand Percy’s ideas. You are teaching Percy’s ideas to your audience by using your experience as an example. You are continuing Percy’s work.

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I have read it many times, and I have thought about it a lot even in between readings. It is one of my favorite pieces of philosophy, and also one of the most difficult to grasp, but that is exactly why it is important, especially in the context of ethnographic research. We all have expectations about the way things are, or the way things should be. How many times have you written an essay with silly homonym errors, or easy punctuation errors in it, and missed them when you revise? I don’t know, but that is just because I lost track of how much I have written a long time ago, and I bet that there are some in this text as well. I would say that I have never caught all of my obvious errors on a first revision during the “door closed” part of the writing process. How does this equate to “Loss of the Creature?”

From Walker Percy, The Loss of the Creature, 1954

I would suggest that we all inevitably package our experiences in little mental cubbyholes, and that when we thereafter encounter something similar we tend to put in the same cubbyhole with that previous experience similar to it, and so when we think about different experiences, we tend to think of them in a patterned way. That way of thinking represses fully realizing the implications of new experiences, and restricts creativity. In any interaction with other people we have inevitably gone through something similar with someone else, and when observing other people we inevitably compare those observations to our own experiences interacting with other people. Therefore, we categorize our experiences and observations before we have even really experienced them or thought about them. Percy’s example of the ways that one might be able to strip of the categorization, “the experience package,” associated with an experience were three. One can just be mentally strong and flexible enough to resist categories (which I actually think is a false statement because categorization is how human minds work, and is what allows us to compile information, create tools based on that information be they symbols or hammers, and conquer the world), the second example is a bomb going off in the biology class that leaves the student on the floor with the dogfish right in front of his eyes(which is equivalent to the random encounter of the young man finding a dead one on the beach and deciding to explore its guts, example he used to introduce the fish to the essay at least in my mind), or the being apprenticed to a great man thing (good luck with that, truly graet thinkers are thin on the ground). So, we are left with the problem of figuring out how to remove our experiences from the packaging they come in. As Ned pointed out, drugs can work, but that is a very dangeroous course, and can complicate things worse than you want or just kill you.

I’ve Read Walker Percy’s “The Loss of the Creature: ..