November 18th 2011
“Money and Power Can Cause Corruption”
In Don DeLillo’s novel “Cosmopolis”, the main character Eric Packer is portrayed as a rich and selfish asshole that is shallow towards women. The novel takes place over the period of one day in the life of Eric Packer on his way to get a haircut in New York City. On his way to get his hair cut Eric and the driver of his limousine are slowed down by a series of interesting events including a presidential motorcade, the death of famous music artist Brother Fez and a violent protest of naked people. In the conclusion of the novel Eric is confronted by Richard Sheets (AKA- Benno Levin) who expresses his hatred towards him and also expresses his many desires to kill him. Even when Eric is faced with death as he is sits directly next to his murder he still feels no remorse for his selfishness, greed and heartless behavior; and because he feels no remorse I believe that he did not have an epiphany in the conclusion of the novel.
Through DeLillo’s descriptions of him, I as a reader think that Eric Packer is portrayed as a selfish, rich and greedy asshole in this novel. His selfishness and greed can be seen in many different places throughout the text. An example of Eric’s heartlessness can be seen when DeLillio refers to this statement of Eric’s, “He said these words into the face of Richard Sheets. Means nothing to me. He felt a trace of the old stale pleasure, dropping an offhand remark that makes a person feel worthless” (192). The pleasure that Eric receives from making a person feel worthless is an example of his heartless behavior. I believe that his heartless behavior is disturbing and it makes him look like an asshole. I think that this behavior is caused by an internal depression and an internal hatred that Eric feels towards himself. Richard is aware of Eric’s depression and self-hatred and I believe that this knowledge is expressed when he tells him, “Even when you self-destruct, you...