What Do Our Possessions Reveal About Us? Essay on Jobs and How They Shape us
Each person's possessions reveal some mysterious, and sentimental part of them that may be concealed from society. For instance, if a child loves a blanket you can assume the blanket holds great sentimental value to them, for they have had it as long as they can remember. Peoples’ possessions reveal parts of their untold story, some even reveal more to the outside than they themselves have yet to discover. To understand what possessions reveal about people, you need to understand the reason why society strives for more. The saying, money can’t buy happiness has evolved to the exact opposite, that in fact, money can and will buy people whatever they desire, which may or may not lead them to greater happiness. Possessions reveal how people want to live, their main priorities, and how they want to be remembered after death.
Possessions can be shown as a story, a message of someone else’s life. They show the steps or results of their journey. In Maupassant’s The Necklace, the main character faces an internal struggle, where she feels her desires don’t match her current life. Not only does Madame Loisel feel like she deserves luxurious items, but she also “[feels] that all attributes of a gracious life...should rightly have been hers”(Maupassant 3). The feeling of desire that Madame Loisel constantly finds manipulating her behavior also affects her ideal picture of her own possessions.
This leads to her efforts of trying to obtain the necklace, which ironically leads to her heightened poverty. Losing this necklace is symbolic because her downfall would come out of her greed. Through these possessions, readers are able to understand who Madame Loisel wishes to be, and who she ultimately will be as a product of those possessions. The material items that people possess reveal their main priorities in how they want to live their lives.
Everyone has their priorities in life, they are personalized by who you are and what you have experienced. The priority of family is common for most because as you grow up your family is always there to lead and guide you. In the story “Civil Peace” by Chinua Achebe, explains the impact that the war has on Jonathan Iwegbu. As the readers continue on, they see that Jonathon’s possessions reveal his main priorities. Jonathan's house is in bad condition and he explains that “even that monumental blessing must be accounted also totally inferior to the five heads in the family.”(Achebe 4) The appreciation that Jonathan expresses for seeing his house and family explain the ill importance of material possessions to him. Jonathan materializes his family over anything else.
He is a perfect example of someone who prioritizes his family as his possession. Later in the story, Jonathan and his family get robbed, the choice comes down to put his family at risk or give the thieves the money. The robbery had little impact on Jonathan as long as his family was kept safe. The aftermath consisted of questions if his possession of money even mattered. He went on to ask ‘“what is egg-rasher? Did I depend on it last week? Or is it greater than other things that went with the war?”’(Achebe 43) Jonathan's little need for money shows his possessions and their order of importance. It is important to know what possessions are of most value to an individual. Possessions are categorized by value and their importance shows how society as a whole wants to be remembered.
It is not that people fear death, it's the fear that their spirit won’t be remembered. People make footprints on Earth while they are alive so that their death is as important as their life. In the photos of King Tut, one portrays a bunch of objects in his tomb. These objects represent gifts from his people, things that they feel he will need in the afterlife. In Egyptian culture, the afterlife is heavily valued and was equal in importance to their real lives. People left objects to show their appreciation, maybe if they help out their ancestors they too will be remembered. Sometimes showing the world who you are is another means of making you remembered. In the story “The Great Gatsby”, Jay Gatsby throws lavish parties with numerous amounts of people and lots of dancing.
Everyone in New York has either heard or been to one of his parties. Gatsby describes a typical night after throwing one of these parties, his workers“...toiled all day with mops and scrubbing-brushes and hammers and garden-shears, repairing the ravages of the night before”. (Fitzgerald 39) Gatsby’s possessions such as his house, great food, and pool all attract people to these parties. He wants to be known for throwing the greatest parties. Some may hope to become President and truly hold a lasting impact on society, where others, like Gatsby, would rather be remembered for lavish parties. Possessions can say a lot about a person’s character, and how eager they are to be accepted by society.
Possessions hold different levels of importance per individual. Though some may not even hold material items dear to them, everyone has something that they prize, whether it is materialized by society or not. Possessions reveal how people want to live, their main priorities, and how they want to be remembered after death.