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T O M F O S T E R S L I F E W I T H I N H I M S E L F The story Drink from Sherwood Andersons Winesburg Ohio describes a young man by the name of Tom Foster This man lives his life with minimal contact to the rest of the world and experiments with each one of lifes experiences alone and only once He accepts things as they are and treats them as an experience and an opportunity to learn He keeps his thoughts under strict control Occasionally there is an act he wishes to experience and he proceeds to do so in solitude He lives within himself Although he may stand around in a circle of men and occasionally contribute a word or two he is not really involved It is a defense mechanism to allow him to precisely control his life and to protect others from suffering due to how he lives On page 129 the story states The women in the houses knew and loved Tom Foster and the tough boys in the gangs loved him also They loved him because he gave them no reason not to He never exposed enough of himself to give them a reason to dislike him I am sure his relationship with the prostitutes and gangs of Cincinnati was much like his relationship with the men and boys of Winesburg described on page 130 a standing about listening and occasionally when addressed saying a few words It was easy for him to fit into Winesburg because he could fit in anywhere He spoke too little for there to be something to dislike about him He lived in his own world separated from everybody else When Tom steals the money to buy food and is caught he takes the consequences He is ashamed but likes the feeling because he learns from it I suspect the crime was
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