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Born in Columbus Georgia McCullers grew up in a comfortable setting for her father was a well-to-do watchmaker and jeweler Since her childhood McCullers had been full of creativity demonstrated through both music and literature As she aged and matured writing became her true love and she established herself as a mainstream southern Gothic author when she wrote The Heart is a Lonely Hunter at only twenty-three This title accurately describes the theme of the novel and depicts mans never ending quest for love and acceptance This book takes place at a time when racial discrimination was the prominent cultural tradition in the south in the 1930s A lament against loneliness racism and injustice are dominant ideas of this 20th century post-war novel In the beginning of the story two deaf-mutes John Singer and Antopolous share a strong relationship in which John is constantly taking care of his friend However the two companions are separated when Antopolous is admitted to a mental institution When this relationship is severed John moves to a small Southern town where he meets a young tomboy named Mick kelly Jack Blunt a boisterous drunk Biff Brennan a lonely caf entrepreneur and Dr Copeland an African American physician who is intelligent yet bitter and closed minded All of these characters are spellbound by John Singers apparent serenity and spirit in such a depressing and stressful world Seeking wisdom and happiness these characters are intrigued by this disabled man and each forms his own special bond with him As these characters spend increasingly more time with John they are able to find answers to their problems but selfishly only continue to visit him because he serves as a solution to their loneliness In the end John Singer is the only character left unhappy and when he learns that his best friend in the mental institution has died life itself becomes meaningless driving him to commit suicide In The Heart
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