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Analysis of Gretel Ehrlich's About Men

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  The essay “ About Men” is a part of Gretel Ehrlich’ s book “ The Solace of Open Spaces” where the writer describes her perception of Wyoming and understanding of its land and people (Hoy n. pag. ). That’ s why the perception of a cowboy’ s image is described in such a non-fictional way like a kind of metaphor or a sign that transfers a reader to some deeper interpretation of a cowboy, not as a profession, or some man from Marlboro’ s advertisement. Ehrlich’ s cowboy is a deeply perceptional character that possesses some crucially exceptional character traits that in some way characterize the kind of man that is considered to be an ideal.

Thus the author describes the theme of conformity and rebellion in such way in order to emphasize the duality of man's nature and to reveal the universal truth of what men hide and what they actually demonstrate, which often are completely different things. What surprises us about the text’ s depiction of the theme is probably this universality of what the author describes, because there are different professions that could have been described instead of a cowboy in this essay.

Thus the text becomes the food for deep reflection on the matter and makes a reader to consider different aspects of human personality; it turns out that many things we are sure about other people could be wrong just because we don’ t really analyze them in different ways. The author suggests us to look at a cowboy the way we aren’ t used to looking at him; she reveals such almost maternal aspects of his job that we’ ve never thought about considering cowboy’ s image that we have in our minds.

The way how Ehrlich describes it is very sensitive and imaginary so it almost reaches our intuitive perception of a cowboy’ s character and simultaneously transfers the perception on the men’ s general image. Thus the fact that the text is non-fiction benefits the sensual perception of the message that the author is trying to send to her reader. The point is that non-fiction texts are more apt to touch souls and influence those deep perceptional stimuli that activate people’ s imagination.

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