AP Composition and Literature
November 4, 2013
Like most English words, desperation originated from another language, in this case Latin. The Latin word desperationem is the English equivalent of desperation. “As his hands wrapped tighter around her neck, the young girl was began to understand what true desperation felt like.” and “The child’s face was marked by despair when he was told about the loss of his beloved pet.” Exhibit that though the two words, desperation and despair, are often thought of as the same, they actually aren’t. Desperation being a noun and despair being a verb and adjective is the grammatical difference between the two, but that isn’t the only difference. Desperation is the state of despair itself.
Not many have experienced was desperation truly is. Likewise to how desperation and despair are different, so are desperation and desperate. Everyone can claim they’ve been desperate for something. A single mother desperate for money to support her family. A kid desperate for acceptance is society. Desperate for equality. You’re desperate for things that will help with your problems; the problems you don’t think are fair to have to deal with. Life isn’t perfect, nor will it ever be, something many need to learn to understand.
A good comparison to the two would be need and want. Of course in today’s world there’s little difference. “I need these shoes! Everyone else has them.” This claim is completely wrong. What people need is the sustenance to survive. All the extra amenities we have in life aren’t necessary to function, we just want them. And that’s the big picture. Desperate for something you don’t need, or desperation for something you can’t live without.
Desperation to me is for life. For the will to live and not give up on everything. It’s an emotional concept that doesn’t have its own exact definition. The will to continue to live is desperation, that’s the only...