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The Best Way To Understand The Character Of A Society Is To Examine The Character Of The Men And Women That The Society Chooses As Its Heroes Or Its Role Models - With A Free Essay Review



The culture of a society is reflected by the people who live in it. In every era, there are heroes and heroines who are remembered for their ardor and philanthropic acts. Thus they form ideals for the country and reflect the character of the society.

Whenever we think of a country, like India we recall the rich cultural heritage, values and deep rooted moral values. We think about the heroes and legend men of the country like Mahatma Gandhi, the father of the nation, who devoted all his life for the freedom of the country. We recall the sacrifices made by him. The values and morals like non–violence, ahimsa, brotherhood, and equality are the basic threads that bolsters the cultural morals of the society. They reflect the beliefs and principles that the people still value and adhere to.

A legend like Rani Lakshmi Bai is still revered for her valor; Mother Teresa a Noble prize winner is remembered for her philanthropic work. Thus they reflect the traits of the society in which the women have made immense changes. The cultur of a society is formed and reflected by benign efforts by these people. Sonia Gandhi, in the field of politics, is admired for her courage, her determination and her dedication to the people of the country.

Sachin Tendulkar, a renowned sportsman is admired all over the world. It reflects the popularity of sports in the society and how people love playing cricket.

To understand the traits of prevalent literature we read books of eminent writer like Arundhti Roy. They depict the real picture of the society. We think of Shabana Azmi as an actress, an activist, a philanthropist and a strong women who is gracious, fearless and intelligent. She is a multifaceted women who achieved success in many fields like politics, art, movies etc. Shobha De is one of the india best selling authors and has written articles, books and a cutrrent editor of a newspaper. They show the traits of the prevalent society and reflect an insight of the country. Lata Mangashker the nightingale of India is admired for her songs. The themes of her songs manifest the culture of the country.

In the field of administration and security, Kiran Bedi is the first women IPS officer. She showed courage and dedication to her work and made transformations all around the country. She transformed the Thar Jail, and helped people to live a better life. She even changed the Delhi traffic rules.

The culture of India is reflected by the art forms like Yoga, and dances like Bharatnatayam. We see the performances of Hema Manlini and understand the different forms of dance. Yoga is practiced and people follow the Yoga gurus to learn the benefits of performing yoga.

To understand the beauty of the country we think of Sushmita Sen, Miss Universe, and Ashwaryia Rai, Miss World, who represented the country. They have got international fame and are role models to many young women.

Thus to know the characteristic of a country one should study the ideal heros and heroines.

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ESSAY REVIEW

This essay does not answer the prompt and would probably receive a poor score for that reason. I've learned a lot about the cultural and political icons in India from your essay, and for that I'm grateful, but I've learned next to nothing about the possible relationship between the character of a society and the character of its heroes. It's a good idea, and in many cases absolutely necessary, to demonstrate an argumentative point with an example, but while your essay is full of examples, it is very short on argumentative points. I often find myself encouraging people to think of specific examples to help them flesh out the arguments that they want to develop. In this case, however, I would encourage you, purely as an exercise, to think about how you might answer the question without using any specific examples. You need to think about the problem more abstractly. And again (and I'll keep saying it for as long as you keep submitting essays with this problem!) you need to think about these essays in a less one-sided way.

If you've read my other reviews of your essays, you should be able to predict the first question you need to ask here: Why might someone think that the character of a society's heroes does not reflect the character of that society?

Perhaps it would help here to quote someone to whom you refer in your essay: "I like your Christ. I do not like your Christians. Your Christians are so unlike your Christ. The materialism of affluent Christian countries appears to contradict the claims of Jesus Christ that says it's not possible to worship both Mammon and God at the same time." Those words have been attributed to Gandhi. Of course this quotation still just gives us an example of a possible disjunction between the character of a society and the character of one of its heroes. If we believed that what Gandhi says of Christian society is true of every society, then we might make the following generalization: Societies choose heroes who embody values that they themselves do not embody. Once we've got that generalization, then (before rushing to the example of the Christians who are not like their Christ) we can try to think of a possible reason that would support our general claim: 'Heroes are necessarily exceptional figures. They would not be heroes if they were not different from those who view them as such. If they were the same as everyone else, they wouldn't be heroes, they would be ordinary folk. It follows that the character of a society is always different from the character of its heroes." (I'm leaving out the case of role models, which is slightly different, but what I'm trying to clarify here is the structure of the right approach to the problem we're addressing in writing this kind of essay.) So now we've got a general claim and reasons for believing that general claim. At this point, we can support our reasons with examples: "Historically, many Christian societies, for example, have been violently oppressive of other cultures, and pursued earthly wealth with zeal, yet they have chosen as their hero a man, Christ, who preached peace and despised wealth." Then, we draw a conclusion, relevant to the general claim, on the basis of this example. That is, we connect the example to the claim: "We can learn remarkable little about the character of Christian society by studying the character of Jesus Christ, a fact that supports the general conclusion that the exceptional character of heroes makes them irrelevant to the understanding of the society that espouses them as such."

Now if I were writing an essay in response to the prompt we are concerned with here, all of that stuff I've just written (the stuff in quotation marks) would appear in a paragraph beginning with the phrase "on the one hand." I would also change strong claims to weak claims to afford me the possibility of making a completely different argument. Instead of saying "makes them irrelevant" in the last sentence of the previous paragraph, for instance, I might say "would seem to make them irrelevant."

My next paragraph would then begin with the words "On the other hand." And in that paragraph, I would try to demonstrate how, despite everything just said, we can still learn a lot about a society from studying its heroes. That would be very easy to do, so I'm not going to bother!

Best, EJ.

P.S. Please, please proofread before submitting essays. I've been correcting a lot of the typos for the sake of intelligibility, but it's tiresome, and not my job!
Submitted by: Nam
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Comments
Berstff
+1

I just wanted to say that this was an insightful review on how to answer a GRE prompt.

Thanks!
April,09 2012

Rate Comment:
Huoshuting
+1

The review tells me how to organize evidence and opinion, very constructive! Also it refelcts culture difference to some extend. The author , I guesss is from the east, he/she does not made the point directly but to let the opinion emerge by piling up examples. While the reviwer took a western mind and likes to follow the chain of thought.
October,26 2012

Rate Comment:
Harmangrewal
+1

It is a good essay really. I ve been reading so many essays which say that character of men /women does not determine character of the society, their arguments were baseless. But this one is filled with examples and make a vivid impact.
June,15 2012

Rate Comment:
Nam
+1

The essay is written very well....and the examples given are quite organised.....well done.
December,15 2012

Nam
+1

The essay is written very well....and the examples given are quite organised.....well done.
December,15 2012

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