The Obstacles Faced By The Main Character In Paul’s Case

A person is in a state of complete negativity when they experience depression. Sometimes depression can leave a mental scar. A mental disorder or traumatic experience in one’s past can lead to depression. Depression is a common condition, with some cases being more severe than others. Depression can cause mood swings and even suicidal thoughts in some cases. Some cases have shown that depression can lead to other depressive-related problems. Paul’s Case is a story by Willa Catherine about a young boy who is very unique. Although the story doesn’t tell much about Paul, the actions he takes make it clear that he is a unique character. Paul was different from everyone else. I found the story fascinating. Paul is depressed and has some mental problems. This paper will discuss the main character from “Paul’s Case” along with the challenges he must face. This author wrote this way because he wanted to communicate a message.

Paul’s identity is a major problem in the story. He feels a certain way at the beginning of the story, but is confused by why his life does seem different. He may feel like he is wealthy, but his reality isn’t the same. Paul was also faced with a problem when he decided to steal money and go on weekend getaways. Paul spends the money as if it were his own. Paul shows that he does not consider himself to be of the ordinary class, but rather as being high-class. Lying does nothing to determine if someone is suffering from a mental disorder. Lying can be a sign of self-deception. This story also shows the struggle between conformity, individuality. Paul is forced to steal and lie on numerous occasions in order to escape his conformists. Paul’s lies and theft, as well as his attempts to escape from the conformists, lead to isolation, depression, shame, and an inability to accept his own individuality. The story shows Cather’s insistence on individuality versus conformity as well as Paul’s lying and stealing throughout. Paul’s harsh criticisms are evident in his meticulous observations of people and their daily routines. Paul’s hatred for Cordelia Street is the most glaring criticism. Cather describes Cordelia street and points out that not all houses are alike. Later on, Paul, while in New York, contemplates his fear of being reprimanded. But Cather reminds him daily of the pain that awaits him at Cordelia Street.

Willa Cather’s tragic tale shows that Paul’s desire to have more in life than what he has now is the root cause of his internal conflicts. His disengagement from reality is what drives his destruction. Paul’s dissatisfaction is evident in his acts and repulsion towards his teachers. Paul is happy only when he can get lost in his work. Paul has problems when negative comments are made about his drawings. Paul found his way to express himself through art he was passionate about. Paul could only express himself through the art he loved because he was unable to communicate his inner feelings to anyone else. This could explain why his art made no sense to anyone else.

This story is set in the twenty-first century. The society back then was very different. Homosexuality wasn’t accepted. It doesn’t matter that homosexuality was not accepted. It was something that was hidden. Paul is impliedly considered a homosexual in this story. Paul’s lackluster relationship with his dad and absense from his mother might be the reason Paul’s case was called “gay suicidal”. His homosexuality is the main theme of the story. Paul’s story is filled with allusions about his sexual identity. Gay struggles can be very draining and mentally exhausting. Many people suffer from mental scars and end up feeling depressed. He may have felt like he was living a second life because he knew he couldn’t reveal his inner truths publicly for fear of being rejected by the rest of the world.

Everyone is affected differently by depression. Meaning, it affects everyone in different ways. Paul is showing signs and symptoms associated with depression. It is evident that Paul has tried to expose the part of himself that he had been hiding from the outside world by his character and how he acts. His worldview is different from everyone else’s. Paul found depression too difficult to bear so he ends up taking his own life. The story also implies that Paul experienced mood swings. Paul’s creative imagination and whirling mind are the main causes of his intense mood swings. His inability to communicate his true thoughts and feelings to others is also a result. It seems that Paul can find people who can help him feel less alone, particularly Charley Edwards. Paul’s relationship with Charley Edwards, while evoking a slight sexual attraction, is a clear indication of his inability and unwillingness to confront his sexuality. These relationships may initially seem to offer comfort and connection. However, they eventually end. Paul continues to feel trapped in a world where he must hide his homosexuality from both himself and others.

Paul would have been able to get a lot of help today if psychology had advanced. Mental problems are still a serious problem, but they are becoming more sophisticated. Paul was clearly suffering from an internal issue that led to his suicide. Paul’s suicide was a tragic ending. This is the story of a young man who was rejected by his world at an early stage in his life. Cather shows us how the alienation caused by being homosexual in an anti-gay society can make life unbearable. Cather shows Paul’s suicide as a mistakenly executed act in the last months. However, Cather encourages the reader not to lose heart and believe that, even in the most hopeless cases, there is still hope for self acceptance, self realisation, love, connection, and love. These are the things that can relieve even the most severe feelings of isolation.


  • killiantrevino

    Killian Trevino is an educational blogger and school teacher who uses her blog to share her knowledge and experiences with her readers. She has a strong interest in teaching and sharing her knowledge with others, and her blog is a great way to do that.