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Word Count: 470
Unicorn in the Garden by James Thurber is a classic example of the existentialist philosophy of choice and subjectivity as shown by the characterization of the man his wife the police and the psychiatrist As the story opens we find a man sitting at home eating breakfast with his wife upstairs asleep The man who chooses to glory in his existence by rising and eating is blessed with the spectacle of a unicorn in his garden The man is happy The unicorn eats his roses The wife has chosen to sleep and ignore the beautiful day but in so doing has negated further choices she might have made had she woken up The two times the man attempts to wake his wife to the life around her and in the garden she further confirms her lack of interest in life and living the moment that has presented itself The wife ignores and insults her husband for believing that a unicorn exists Her own idea of what is real is subjective to what she has witnessed thus far which could be anything or nothing She is entropic The wife8212not referred to as a woman or even given a name8212is only referred to as an extension of the man We soon see that after the man is called a booby by his wife she begins to force her own subjectivity of nothingness upon him The unicorn which symbolized life and choice then disappears and the man feels compelled to take a nap symbolic of his acceptance of his wifes negativism By choosing to sleep in the garden on his bed of roses the symbolic center of life the man expresses his desire to maintain a connection with life It is this desire that later leads to the mans salvation The wife however continues to exert her own destructive influence by calling for the police and the psychiatrist in order to further deprive her husband of his freedom
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