TheFrontier Changing CharacterWhenMr. James Fenimore Cooper started writing his books, he was writing them in theAmerican Romanticism era. This means that his books most likely reflectedvalues found in this era. The book The Last of the Mohicans had many of thesecharacteristics. We find him writing about nature, music and God in this story,all characteristics of this era. Mr. Cooper also uses the characteristic of thecommon man becoming a hero in this story many times.
He shows some new aspectsof family on the frontier. The interracial love between Uncas and Cora was anew aspect to many people in that age. He also shows Hawkeye almost seeming tobecome Uncas’s father figure after the disappearance of his father. The authorsin the Romanticist era also wrote about change in peoples’ thoughts and actionsalso. Theunsettled frontier made changes in peoples lives and opinions in how they wouldlive and think the rest of their lives. Some of the characters of The Last ofthe Mohicans story experienced this same change. There were some of thesecharacters that resisted firmly against that changes. Gamut is one of thecharacters which was the most changed throughout this story.
Whenwe first encounter Gamut he is very theological, and pronounced in his feelingsabout nature, God, and music. Hecontinues to be the weaker in spirit and in strength of all the men throughoutthe novel. Near the end of the book though, we begin to see David show somesigns of bravery, courage, and valor. When he was found with the sisters at themassacre after their leaving the fort. To help in the only way he could, heplayed his pipe with all his might and skill, and almost assuredly saved his,and the sisters lives. When Uncas and his band charge after the Hurans to rescueCora.
David wishes to join the warriors band even though he wishes not to killas he states in this excerpt. “Now, I have journeyed far, and sojourned much ingood and evil with the maiden ye seek; and though not a man of war, with myloins girded and my sword sharpened, yet would I gladly strike a blow in herbehalf.” The fact that he even wanted to go into battle with them is a clearsign that his character had evolved. Sohow did the changes that Mr. Cooper gave to David reflect the characteristicsof American Romanticism? David in the books holds nature in very high regard inhis life. He also adores God and music as he progresses throughout the story.David is a man who also is seen very often reciting poetry, usually to Alice.He is a normal man in the beginning of the story, but as he progresses he wantsto go and help rescue Cora, so we see how a fairly normal man can become one ofthe heroes in the end.
Acharacter who also changes in the story is the main hero of Uncas. Uncas is theIndian who in the beginning of the story, seems rather indifferent about thewhole trip he must take. Uncas seems like he only wants to return the girls andgo back to his peaceful life in the woods.
As he travels along and gets moreacquainted with Cora its becomes apparent that he begins to fancy Cora and thatshe feels the same. By the end of the story Uncas is determined beyond reasonto go and save the captured Cora. He leads his Indian friends into battle andthey struggle against the evil Magua and his gang. He even ends up giving hislife in the effort for Cora’s freedom. It is very obvious that Uncas hadchanged very much throughout the entire story. So,did Uncas’s change reflect the values of American romanticism? Uncas’s love fornature was evident and he obtained a gentler spirit also.
The Romanticist eraalso dealt a lot with feelings of emotion. Uncas shows his emotion when heraises his battle cry to stir the soldiers to rescue Cora. Uncas also came up from being a somewhatnormal man to becoming the main hero in this novel another trait often seen inRomanticism.