Interaction Between Violence and Distance in “Assault”

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The novel Assault as written by the Dutch author Harry Mulisch is one of the literally work that effectively portrays a combination of emotions in the manner it is written. The novel narrates a story of a young man named Anton that was living during the Second World War. The effects of the war that was there in the whole world are evident from the beginning of the novel where Anton had to move far away from his home after his two parents were killed.

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The author has managed to bring out a close relationship that exists between violence and emotional distance. Anton is described to be full of strong emotions as a result of the death of his parents that also leaves him homeless and had to live with relatives far away from home.

Anton is in a constant struggle with strong emotions after the parents were killed and he moved from their homes. He lived in a bewailing mood for many years yearning to go back home where his family was killed. Seven years later the after the massacre he gets back to their home only to find the find the burned down residence. The main reason that he Anton cannot manage to stay all his life normally without going back to his burned residence is that he felt attached to the bond that existed between in their family before the massacre causing an emotional stir. It is only when he gets back into the burned residence that the events that took place on the fateful day become vivid in him. While he is far from home he does live in denial for all the time.

After the opening of the book where Anton watches the death of his parents and killing of the neighbors which subsequently led to the burning of their residence the novel jumped to 1952. The author describes the events that took place over the period not to be very important. Though the novel might not contain much explanation about the life of Anton over the given period there is still a lot that was undergoing in his life emotionally. As he tries to continue living a normal life and he goes to school to become a doctor later on in his life the night of the massacre becomes more vivid as the development took place.

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