Drinking and kings, the basis of each story, and with these, you gain some perspective of how people lived socially and what they thought was important in two different periods of time. “The Swimmer” and Le Morte d’Arthur are both fundamentally different with their physical attributes such as syntax, grammar, and diction, however, they both have underlying communications of two different societies.
Each story tells of social problems that concerned the people and author at the time and what they thought was important to talk about or know. In Le Morte d’Arthur the only concern and importance of their society was royalty and wars. It is hard to find any other subjects in Le Morte d’Arthur because it depicts the biography of the Pendragons – more importantly Arthur. I found relatively no mention of the how peasants or non-royalty were affected during this whole period of no king, or if they supported the previous monarch Uther Pendragon. The only time the low members of society participate is when Arthur ascends the thrown – they all cheer. However, we see a radical change in the subjects when progressing a few hundred years to 1964 with “The Swimmer.”
“The Swimmer” subjects normal suburb people fighting with social drinking and a lost man: Ned. The theme of “lost” and finding one’s self are both present in the stories, and seems to be a long attested notion of finding something –physically or mentally- to better improve an aspect of your life. The kingdom tries to find a king and Ned tries to go back home and on the way prove that his mind is not going crazy with the consumption of alcohol. Alcoholism is the underlying problem faced in Ned’s society, and even though Ned is a commoner, we see the shift from higher to lower society as interesting subjects with unique problems. It also shows that there are a lot more commoners today and that they are keepers of their society, they have the power to influence and discover problems within themselves.
Over the past...