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Words: 939 |
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Published: Jan 15, 2019
Words: 939|Pages: 2|5 min read
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A ruling passion in an individual's life has the ability to demonstrate an effect on a persons life including the atmosphere surrounding them. In the novel My Name is Asher Lev by Chaim Potok, the author traces the making of a great painter from the time of Asher being an ordinary boy, to his response to his ruling passion, leading to his successful yet controversial exhibitions of being a distinguished painter"Leading to his successful yet controversial exhibitions as a distinguished painter" instead of "leading to his successful yet controversial exhibitions of being a distinguished painter" Close Comments Close Comments
Close Comments. The book centers on the growing separation between Asher and his family and his community as he devotes himself to painting. Ashers commanding gift of art has resulted in Asher alienating himself from his family and community, his ruling passion comes in conflict with their valuesThis sentence should be revised to "Asher's commanding gift of art has resulted in his alienation from his family and community, as his ruling passion comes into conflict with their values".
Ashers devotion to painting is at odds with the values of his family and communityThis sentence should be revised to "Asher's dedication to painting is at odds with the values of his family and community, as he states at the very beginning of the novel". Close Comments Close Comments Close Comments
Close Comments. Asher states at the very beginning of the novel; (p.3) As a matter of fact, observant Jews did not paint at all -- in the way that I am painting. So strong words are being written and spoken about me, myths are being generated.. Asher confesses that he is a traitor, an apostate, a self-hater, an inflicter of shame upon his family, his friends, his people. Painting human figures is not a tradition among religious Jews. Ashers mother bluntly says, Painting is for goyim. Jews dont draw and paintThis passage should be revised to "Painting human figures is not a tradition among religious Jews, and Asher's mother bluntly says, 'Painting is for goyim. Jews don't draw and paint.'"
Close Comments. His dedication to paintings distracts Asher from his Torah study, which the community sees as the proper way for a boy to spend his time, and that is defined by the episode in which he draws on a page of the Chumash. Also, Ashers continuous devotion to his art turns him away from the service to the Rebbe and Russian Jews, leading to Ashers members of his family accepting it as their responsibility. His everlasting dedication to his paintings sends Asher against his family and community, but it isnt just the act painting that has accomplished negativity apon their values, the subject matter Asher chooses makes it worseThis sentence should be revised to "His everlasting dedication to his paintings sends Asher against his family and community, but it isn't just the act of painting that has accomplished negativity upon their values. The subject matter Asher chooses makes it worse."
Asher chooses to paint nudes at a point in his life. This subject matter makes it worse for the situation between him and his family and his communityThis sentence should be revised to "Asher chooses to paint nudes at a certain point in his life, which exacerbates the situation between him and his family and community" Close Comments Close Comments Close Comments
Close Comments. He paints nude women, first copying pictures in the museum, then using live models in Jacon Kahns studio. This results in Asher violating the religious standards of his community, which do not agree with paintings at all, never mind nude paintingsThis sentence should be revised to "This results in Asher violating the religious standards of his community, which do not agree with paintings at all, let alone nude paintings."
Close Comments. The nude paintings also increases the distance between himself and his parents. His father wants to support Asher by attending one of his exhibitions, but repeatedly says that he cannot go because of the Hasidic insistence against showing off. Asher even says to his father; (p 304) Because I'm part of a tradition, Papa. Mastery of the art form of the nude is very important to that tradition. Every artist who ever lived drew or painted the nude. . . .I dont want to sit in a room painting for myself. I want to communicate what I do. And I want critics to know I can do it. . . . I respect you, Papa. But I cannot respect your aesthetic blindness. Asher speaks about his father, seeing the though him, reasoning that his father has no appreciation for art, seeing no beauty, therefore not understanding Ashers work. Ashers paintings of nudes soon enough lead to the Brooklyn Crucifixion, which opened up for more values being brokenThis sentence should be revised to "Asher's paintings of nudes soon lead to the Brooklyn Crucifixion, which opens up for more values being broken".
Close Comments. At the opening and showing of his Brooklyn Crucifixion, Asher brings negative public attention to his parents, which are present, and to the Hasidic community. Asher had adopted the crucifixion to express the anguish of his home life, Asher uses an image that disturbs many of the Jews who associate it with Christian anti-Semitism. The image has painful implied meanings for Ashers father, who feels that the crucifixion had been in a way responsible for his own fathers murder on a night before Easter decades ago (p366). Ashers art of painting nudes and the crucifixion tears apart his family and goes against their beliefs and values, along with the communitys.
Ashers ruling passion for art consumed him. He couldnt control it himself, he states to his father that he cant help it and his father responds an animal can't help it,...Do you understand me, Asher? The Ribbono Shel Olom gave every man a will. Every man is responsible for what he does, because he has a will and with that will he directs his life. There is no such thing as a man who can't help it. (p166). The father doesnt understand that Ashers gift consumes him, his talent has possessed him, making it hard for Asher to realize the hurt he has caused. Asher is not driven by the family and community values that a typical Jewish boy is supposed to grow up withThis sentence should be revised to "Asher's ruling passion for art consumes him, making it hard for Asher to realize the hurt he has caused". Close Comments
Close Comments. It is his art that has captured his imagination and energies. His ruling passion for artistic expression seems to draw him away from Jewish concerns and family values.
A ruling passion, as demonstrated through Ashers devotion to art, is capable of undermining an individual to what may be considered tradition, important or valued in society. Asher was brought up with strong Hasidic values, yet his talent and gift of art consumed him and made him look past the effects it created. His family and community were against painting, Ashers gift tore his own family apart. The effects of a ruling passion are determined by the nature of the passion itself. In Asher's case, the profoundness of his nature dominated his life, in some ways for the better, and in some ways for the worse.
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