American Male’s Escapism in James Thurber’ Short Story The Secret Life of Walter Mitty

Lina Fahalawati, 2250407002 (2011) American Male’s Escapism in James Thurber’ Short Story The Secret Life of Walter Mitty. Under Graduates thesis, Universitas Negeri Semarang.


Escapism is one of human mental state condition. It belongs to psychological condition of human being in relieving pressure by seeking pleasure. This final project is about escapism in James Thurber’ short story The Secret Life of Walter Mitty. The objectives of this study are to discover sort of escapism found in the short story and analyze the reason why escapism can be done by the American Male in that era. The psychological approach is used to analyze this short story by looking inside the mind and feeling of the author and his fictional characters. By using this approach, I analyze the psychological condition of each character and investigate the case of escapism in American Male. The investigation used in this study is qualitative method while library and other references are used here to get data. The data are focused on sentences, dialogues, and hidden meanings written in the short story. The procedures of collecting the data are reading, identifying, classifying, simplifying, selecting, and then reporting for answering the statements of problems. From the analysis and discussion, there were some results discovered in this study. First, escapism found in this story is sort of effect-based escapism which allow people to enjoy escapist activity by day-dreaming or fantasizing something unreal in their mind. They did escapism for relieving stress and pressure from the miserable condition in America in that time. Second, Mitty’s character represents the American Male condition and the reason of doing escapism. In this case, the main problems of Walter Mitty are male inferiority and the dominant American wife which happened in his real life. Those are the reasons for Walter Mitty to get the American standards of male distinction and male’s achievement in the secret life through fantasy and day-dreams. The final conclusion of the study is that Mitty’s condition which represents the American male condition is strongly influenced by internal and external problems. He needs escapism as the way to get gratification and achievement by fantasy which he cannot get in his real life. Therefore he represents the American male’s escapism in his story and also in real life at that time. I also suggest to the readers to find the different angle of this story and get more knowledge about this story and escapism topic which is still unfamiliar to be discussed.

Item Type: Thesis (Under Graduates)
Uncontrolled Keywords: The Secret Life of Walter Mitty, Escapism, American Male
Subjects: P Language and Literature > PR English literature
Fakultas: Fakultas Bahasa dan Seni > Sastra Inggris (S1)
Depositing User: Hapsoro Adi Perpus
Date Deposited: 10 Jul 2012 21:14
Last Modified: 10 Jul 2012 21:14

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