Conflicts in “The Quiet Man” – Literature Essay
Conflicts occur every day. No one can live their lives without conflict; and no writer can write a good story without conflicts. In “The Quiet Man” by Maurice Walsh is no exception. The characters in the story have many
conflicts with other people, society, and even inside themselves!
The first and most prominent type of conflict is the person versus person. Liam wanted to marry Kathy Carey but she wouldn’t until his sister was out of the house. Liam finally let Ellen marry. Another conflict is that Ellen wanted Shawn to get the dowry from her brother. He finally does. At the end of the story Shawn and Liam fight because Shawn threw money from Liam into a furnace. Shawn wins and be comes a “man.”
The second conflict type is person versus society. This type though not common in this story is important. In the beginning of the story, while in America, society was against Shawn, He was an immigrant trying to make a fortune in America. Society already had a bunch of people wanting to do the same thing. This is very important because if he had succeeded he might not have gone back to Ireland. The second conflict with society is the people of Kerry. They want Shawn and Liam to fight. Finally with pressure he and Liam get into a brawl.
The third and most important conflict is person versus themselves. Shawn Kelvin had to decide between making Ellen his bride without romance or letting her wait for romance and losing her. Finally, he determined he wanted her as a bride. Ellen has to choose between marrying Shawn Kelvin and living with her brother for the rest of her life. She preferred her freedom so she saw fit to marry. Liam had to select between letting Ellen marry and getting married, and in the process become richer. He lets Ellen marry but, sadly Kathy Carey marries someone else.
A conflict is defined as: a fight, battle, or struggle, esp. a prolonged struggle; strife. Life would be monotonous without conflicts; just as books and stories would be dry with out “strife.” Conflicts in the story affect the plot in a lot of unpredictable and unexpected ways. In “The Quiet Man” the ever-present struggles make the adventure of Shawn Kelvin exciting and enjoyable.