Monster By Walter Dean Free Essay


The novel “Monster” by Walter Dean is one of the most reflective and influential works published in 1999, which explores several major themes and aspects which can easily be examined in modern society.

Brief Summary of the Novel

The novel is centered on analyzing the main protagonist, Steve Harmon, after being judged for murder while living in New York. Aspects of identity struggles and inner thoughts about the character are analyzed in the novel.

Introduction of main points

Arguably, the novel examines identity and analysis of the judicial system as part of the main themes. At the same time, other supplementary ideas in characters, such as empathy and connection, accountability, and responsibility, are analyzed under the same approach.


Unlike other literary works published simultaneously, Walter uses a unique technique by presenting the novel as a screenplay, attracting the attention of most readers. Arguably, several thematic issues are reflected in the plot of the novel hence bringing a cause to understanding the context of the novel.


Therefore, this paper will explore the novel’s main concepts and examine their effect on the characters and cause for decision-making.


In “Monster” by Walter Dean Myers, the character of Steve Harmon, a 16-year-old African American accused of homicide, explores the concept of identity in great depth. Throughout the narrative, Steve contends with questions concerning who he is and how others perceive him, especially in light of his heritage. Steve details his identity crisis in his journal, interspersed throughout the narrative. He questions himself in one entry, “Who am I?” Who is Steve Harmon, exactly? Does it matter who I am in this situation?” (Myers, 56). The statement “I do not know who I am, but I am aware that my identity will play a significant role in the outcome of my trial” describes Steve’s inner conflict precisely. Steve meets many people in his legal career with preconceived thoughts and prejudices about him based on his color and upbringing. Steve’s defense attorney feels he is a victim of institutional racism. Steve must face how these relationships shape his identity. Steve’s identity crisis resolves unexpectedly. Steve’s legal engagement has changed him and forced him to rethink his identity. He overcomes his preconceptions to become more sophisticated and nuanced.

The novel addresses reality and perception through media. Steve worries that the media’s sensationalism may harm his trial. “The thing I hate most about the news is that it seems to turn everyone into a monster,” he said heartbreakingly. They always play fiction. Monsters are inanimate objects that can be destroyed, imprisoned, and forgotten (Myers, 73). The comment shows how the media portrays complicated people as stereotypical or terrifying. The characters in the book interact to investigate the relationship between perception and actuality(Ghaussi,3). Everyone around Steve, from his fellow inmates to his defense team, has opinions regarding his capabilities and goals. Through these interactions, he realizes how socioeconomic status, class, and ethnicity influence how we perceive individuals.

Notably, the novel’s themes of responsibility and accountability are key because the protagonist is examined in various ways. The novel examines how people handle responsibility through Steve Harmon. For instance, Throughout the story, Steve doubts his guilt as an accessory to murder. “I caused this, I committed activities” (Myers, 11). The sentence sums up the book’s primary conflict in the argument that Steve must confront the consequences of his conduct, even if he does not fully accept responsibility for the crime. “Monster” covers key social themes such as racial disparity, socioeconomic status, and the criminal justice system, contributing to its success. The book critically analyzes these issues and shows how systemic inequality affects people.

 What worked for the book?

One of the book’s strengths is its utilization of multiple voices for Steve’s trial(Myers,3). Additionally, the novel depicts Steve’s life through journal entries, screenplay snippets, and a first-person narrative.

 What din`t work

Notably, the novel portrays some people using stereotypes and stock characters, which may be problematic. James King, one of the co-defendants, is a vicious attacker with little depth. The novel’s portrayal of attorneys and judges as black-and-white, good and evil, may also seem oversimplified.

How does my work compare with other reviewers?

Arguably there are some similarities and differences between my work and other reviewers for the work. For instance, other reviewers articulate justice and identity as the main themes examined in the novel hence a cause for understanding the author’s approach. The literature critique approach is one major difference between my reading and other perspectives. For instance, the reader and other reviewers analyze the key themes examined by the author, which is not the cause of my rationale for analyzing the critical approach. Other two works for comparison include “Scorpions” and “Lockdown,” novels which reflect on the same themes.


The overall opinion discussed in the body

Conclusively, Monster by Walter Dean Myers explores self-awareness, perception, accountability, and responsibility. The book’s protagonist, Steve Harmon, forces readers to examine their personal biases and how broader social institutions affect individuals. The author, Walter Dean Myers, wrote Scorpions” and Lockdown novels which offers a broad and multifaceted vision of urban life in America, focusing on justice and social injustice(Ghauss,5). Therefore, the novel provides readers with a rationale to reflect and articulate effectively the concepts of justice and other necessary provisions

 Interesting aspects of reading the novel

Ideally, readers might better appreciate “Monster’s” social issues by reviewing familiar themes and characters. I would suggest Walter Dean Myers’ “Monster” to anyone looking for a book that will get them to think deeply about themes of justice, identity, and social injustice. The tale shines, among other things, in its ability to spark intelligent discussion on such important subjects. The book encourages readers to critically consider social injustice and the criminal justice system by presenting a comprehensive portrait of urban life in the United States from several viewpoints and narrative angles. The characters in the book are also multidimensional and vividly realized, and their struggles are delicately and sensitively depicted. Readers will develop a deeper understanding of how social forces affect people’s identities and experiences due to becoming emotionally invested in these characters. Therefore the “Monster” is a book with a plot that will keep readers flipping the pages. Readers of all ages and backgrounds will be profoundly affected by this book, whether they read it alone or as part of a larger series.

Work Cited

Myers, Walter Dean. Monster. HarperCollins, 1999, (1–281)

Ghaussi, Rodaba. Walter Dean Myers’s Monster. Diss. California State University, Northridge, 2019.

Populism As A Theoretical Concept Sample Paper


The word populism has taken center stage in modern political debates, prompting an increasing number of scholars to delve deeply into its meaning. Although there is no universal agreement on populism, many analysts see it as a “political style” used by politicians seeking to connect with various socioeconomic subgroups. Based on their various tactics throughout the 2024 presidential race, this article examines whether Joe Biden and Donald Trump could be labeled populists. To do so, we explore Moffitt’s basic features of populist politics and determine their three primary components. Following that, we will look at how these factors influenced Biden and Trump’s political approaches and actions during the campaign. We want to know whether Biden and Trump have populist attributes based on their actions and commitment to a “populist political style.” We shall investigate what characterizes populism in America’s unique political system; this article intends to add to the continuing debate over populism and its role in modern politics.

Populist political style

Populist politics include actions and communication tactics that appeal to ordinary folks while challenging those in authority. Populism is a “thin ideology,” according to Cas Mudde and Cristobal Rovira Kaltwasser. It does not propose an all-encompassing viewpoint, but rather an approach that people from varied ideological backgrounds might use. Moffitt also identified three elements of populism: anti-establishment rhetoric, charismatic leadership abilities, and contrasting people vs elite stories. AntiestablishmentThis specific political tactic is based on anti-establishment rhetoric. It entails criticizing both parties in authority, media representatives, and other organizations for their inattention to commoners’ problems. Politicians that support this style of politics frequently portray themselves as outsiders seeking to improve the present system while defending the interests of people.

Charismatic leadership is an important component of populist politics that should not be overlooked. Populist leaders usually have enticing traits that allow them to build deep emotional connections with their audience via emotive tales told in plain language. They value communication that is simple and connects with voters’ values and ideals (Kriesi & Pappas, n.d.). Furthermore, populists must analyze how they construct narratives based on “the people versus the elites.” These tales depict politicians who fight for common people against establishment corruption, serving as protectors rather than representing elites who benefit unfairly from ordinary people’s misfortune.

In summary, populism has distinct qualities that emphasize topics that are most important to individuals on a daily basis, as shown by charismatic leaders that utilize approachable language loaded with passion. The people vs elite narrative is an important feature of this political approach because it unites supporters behind a common aim of change toward a better society that benefits the average person. As a result, understanding these components is critical for determining if politicians are engaging in populism or addressing voters’ daily concerns.

Each component’s related behaviors

“Populism & Mobilization,” an essay by Cas Mudde and Cristóbal Rovira Kaltwasser, provides insights on the nature of populism and its link with mobilization. Populism has been a hot issue in political science study in recent decades. Populism, according to the writers, is an ideology and a systematic method that tries to mobilize “the people” against an elite establishment. This movement arose from popular grievances and a desire for more significant political representation/participation while rejecting traditional institutions or elites’ influence on decision-making processes through the use of highly charged emotional language as well as appeals based on popular sentiments and values – all while being led by charismatic figures who claim to represent people’s interests. This essay gives useful insights into the workings of populist movements and their influence on current politics in general.

To further understand the populist political style, it is necessary to deconstruct its three major components: charismatic leadership, anti-establishment rhetoric, and a narrative that pits commoners against elites. The fundamental characteristics of anti-establishment discourse often entail calling into question current political structures while advocating significant changes to fix them.

Populist leaders, according to Mudde (2022), generally accuse power institutions as being false, unsympathetic to people’s concerns, and subservient to certain interests. They may also advocate for an altogether new method to correctly and authentically meeting the demands of ordinary individuals. For example, Donald Trump’s repeated denunciation of the “Washington swamp” and his rallying cry “drain the swamp campaign,” or Bernie Sanders’ attack of the “billionaire class,” both resemble antiestablishment rhetoric.

Establishing a strong personal connection with individuals who support you while seeming trustworthy and accessible is required for effective charismatic leadership. Populist leaders often use personal tales to exhibit empathy for common people’s hardships while portraying themselves as outside personalities free of extreme interest influence inside political institutions. During vital occasions in speeches or rallies, these same persons use simple language that simplifies essential themes aimed at emotional appeal mechanisms for audiences supporting for them.

Examples of such leadership styles can be found in various political landscapes around the world; Barack Obama’s speeches used uplifting aspirational goals fused with personal accounts that connected him even more with his audience, while Donald Trump’s direct communication style laced with constant opponent attacks was visible at his rallies.

Populist politics is based on forming collective identities among followers via compelling narratives like “The People Versus Elite.” This frame depicts politics as a never-ending battle between ordinary folks and affluent corrupt elites who cling to power while dismissing dissident voices from below. Populists often consider themselves as people’s heroes, the only ones capable of fighting for and bringing about constructive social change (Judis, 2016). Elizabeth Warren and Donald Trump are attempting to solve social imbalance concerns by appealing to a “people versus elite” approach. While Warren seeks to reduce wealth disparities, Trump criticizes globalists and elites for failing to understand the problems of ordinary Americans.

Populist political conduct includes criticizing the political system, forming personal bonds with followers, and portraying politics as a war between the people and the elite. Politicians may appeal to ordinary people and establish themselves as agents of significant change by using these strategies.

Using the principle with Biden and Trump

When determining if Joe Biden and Donald Trump are populists, it is critical to assess their political style and conduct in the 2024 presidential election in light of Moffitt’s three components of the “populist political style.” Joe Biden’s political approach is known for tackling economic disparity and ardent support for the working class, both of which are essential tenets of populist politics. His campaign speeches and legislative ideas underscore how his modest beginnings as a blue-collar worker buffer him from excessive influence by big interests in the face of average Americans’ misery. As a result, he suggests policies that emphasize improving labor union fortunes, boosting minimum wage requirements to living wages, and investing in job training programs alongside infrastructure projects–all of which are populist ideas. Biden knows the importance of making personal connections with ordinary Americans. He tells anecdotes about his personal experiences while showing sympathy for people who are suffering financially, emphasizing the need of national reconciliation even in the face of divided politics – important aspects of effective populist government.

Unlike Trump’s divisive brand of populism, which singled out marginalized groups and used dangerous rhetoric to incite hatred against them, Biden’s brand is based on inclusive principles and an unconditional commitment to unifying the country regardless of political divide or background difference–essential ingredients for genuine populism governance success. Biden’s approach is more in line with progressive values than with rigid populism since it prioritizes the development of economic opportunities for all Americans and resolving chronic structural injustices. As a result, although Biden’s campaign has components of the populist political style, it is not entirely populist in the same way that Trump’s was.

The debate is whether Biden and Trump are populists.

Donald Trump’s political style, according to Norris and Inglehart’s (2019) definition of populism, is considerably more closely connected with it. Throughout his campaigns, Trump has focused “draining the swamp” while campaigning for individuals who have previously been overlooked by politicians. He positioned himself as an outsider in politics against an elite class that sought to exploit common people. His communication style was likewise largely populist, using simple language and often repeated slogans or catchphrases to convey his message.

He regularly employed hyperbole or exaggeration, which made him look bigger than life; anecdotes or personal tales were frequently given to connect him with his audience on a deeper level. Trump’s populist approach, however, includes aspects such as xenophobia and nativism that are not always associated with this political style. He stressed the construction of a border wall and a travel restriction for inhabitants of Muslim-majority countries, as well as heated statements about immigrants or refugees that underlined their otherness in comparison to American residents. These measures represent a departure from what defines populism as progressive and inclusive. Although Trump’s political strategy has been termed populist, it is important to note that because of its exclusive and divisive components, this sort of populism fosters controversy and animosity.


Finally, the idea of “populist political style” offers a useful framework for examining political activity inside America’s governance structure. We can determine how politicians interact with common people while challenging entrenched power structures by deconstructing Moffitt’s three-component approach. Examining Joe Biden’s and Donald Trump’s actions throughout the 2024 presidential campaign demonstrates that both candidates exhibit characteristics associated with this form of politics. However, no candidate entirely incorporates all three elements; also, their populist results vary greatly. Regardless of whether populism is an ideology, method, or style in and of itself, it is useful in understanding how politicians court people’ favor and earn support, particularly as social and economic injustices rise in society. As America’s political arena evolves, it becomes vital to pay careful attention to how candidates and parties use populist language and appeals.


Judis. (2016). Populism in the United States1.

Kriesi & Pappas. (n.d.). European Populism in the Shadow of the Great Recession. Kriesi & Pappas edited “European Populism in the Shadow of the Great Recession.”

Mudde, C. (2022). The far-right threat in the United States: A European perspective. The ANNALS of the American Academy of Political and Social Science699(1), 101–115.

Mudde, C., & Kaltwasser, C. R. (2017). 3. populism and mobilization. Populism: A Very Short Introduction, 42–61.

Norris, P., & Inglehart, R. (2019). The Cultural Backlash Theory (Chapter 2) – cultural backlash. Cambridge Core.

Strategies Stated By Yoder-Wise And Menix (2007) For Managing Change Essay Example

As the person in charge of managing change in the acute surgical ward, I would use the techniques outlined by Yoder-Wise and Menix (2007) to put the new policy allowing one loved one of each client to spend the night in the hospital with the client into place. The approaches I would employ are as follows, with an illustration of how to put these into practice:

Effective communication will be the first strategy for managing change in the acute surgical ward. Effective communication plays a pivotal role in change management, and I will employ diverse communication channels to ensure everyone remains well-informed about the new policy and its implementation plan. Through open and transparent communication, we can foster understanding, mitigate resistance, and encourage active participation in the change process (Buljac-Samardzic & Wijngaarden, 2020). For example, I will conduct a comprehensive staff meeting to discuss the change, emphasizing its benefits openly. To enhance comprehension and retention, I will distribute well-crafted written materials and employ visual aids that make the information more captivating and memorable. By prioritizing clear and concise communication, we will alleviate anxiety and minimize resistance to the change.

Education is the second method for controlling change in the acute surgical ward. Education comprises providing staff and clients with the necessary information and abilities to acclimate to the new policy successfully. To do this, I’ll see to it that all staff members receive thorough training on the new policy’s implementation procedure and how to handle any problems that could come up (Robbins & Davidhizar, 2020). Staff members will have the knowledge and skills to successfully navigate the changes if they receive the necessary training. This will increase their competence and sense of security as they carry out the policy. Simultaneously, clients will receive adequate support and information to comprehend and adjust to the new policy, facilitating a seamless transition and promoting positive outcomes.

For example, as part of the training procedure, I will give staff employees in-depth instructions on how to properly handle disputes between prominent people and client-significant individuals. They will have the skills needed to respond to these circumstances in a respectful and helpful manner thanks to this training. Giving staff and clients clear direction and educational materials can help them navigate potential difficulties and promote a peaceful and inclusive workplace.

Offering staff assistance in managing change on the acute surgical ward is the third method I’ll use. Providing staff and clients with support includes helping them through the change process on an emotional and practical level. Making sure staff employees have access to the tools they need to perform their duties effectively will be a top priority for me as the change leader (Teisberg et al., 2020). To help people adjust to the new policy successfully, this also entails giving them the training, resources, and any other assistance needed. I’ll also create a welcoming atmosphere where employees feel free to ask questions and voice their concerns.

For example, I’ll place a high priority on educating staff members in good communication techniques so they can explain the specifics of the new policy to clients and their significant others as part of the support process (Yoder-Wise & Sportsman, 2022). The significance of guaranteeing the security and comfort of clients and their significant others throughout their stay will also be emphasized during this session. In order to help clients and their significant others navigate and cope with the changes brought about by the new policy, I will also make sure they have access to the required support services, such as therapy.

All parties will be involved in the fourth strategy. By actively involving staff and clients in the process of change, involvement cultivates a sense of ownership over the new policy. To do this, I will aggressively include staff members in the planning and execution phases. This will be accomplished by asking for their insightful opinions, welcoming criticism, and embracing suggestions. By doing this, we can make sure that their opinions are taken into account and that they have the power to influence the creation and success of the new policy (Boselie et al.,2021). For example, to involve staff members in the design and executing of the new policy, I will actively ask for their views on boosting the comfort and relevance of significant others’ stays. Their valuable input will be sought to improve and ensure a meaningful experience (Dutheil et al., 2019). By appreciating the viewpoints of both staff and clients, we can establish a collaborative environment, create a more pleasant and meaningful stay for significant others, and consistently enhance the policies to meet their requirements efficiently.

The fifth strategy for managing change in the acute surgical ward will be empowerment. Staff members that are empowered have the freedom to decide for themselves and take an active role in the change process. In order to accomplish this, I will actively solicit the staff’s insightful views and suggestions while preparing and implementing the new policy (Choi & Kim, 2019). By doing this, we can take advantage of their knowledge and perceptions and enable them to make a significant contribution to the formulation and success of the policy. This inclusive strategy encourages staff members to have a feeling of ownership and autonomy while cultivating a collaborative and empowered work environment, which results in more successful implementation and beneficial outcomes.

For example, I will actively seek their ideas on keeping clients and their significant others safe and secure throughout their stay to involve staff members more fully in the formulation and execution of the new policy. We value their opinions and recognize their knowledge by seeking their smart comments (Yoder-Wise & Sportsman, 2022). This feeling of empowerment leads to a deeper commitment to and involvement in the change process, which facilitates a more seamless transition. Participating in decision-making with the employees enables us to benefit from their knowledge and expertise, ultimately enhancing the efficacy and efficiency of the policy’s implementation.

Finally, I’ll use an evaluation technique to manage change in the acute surgical ward. Evaluation entails actively following the new policy’s execution to spot problems and make corrections. To accomplish this, I will actively solicit feedback from the employees, customers, and their significant others. Additionally, I’ll routinely review the implementation procedure. By doing this, we can identify and address any faults or problems immediately (Talevski et al., 2020). For example, as part of the evaluation process, I will closely monitor the safety and security measures implemented for clients and their significant others throughout their stay. Additionally, I will assess the effectiveness of the training programs and written materials provided to both staff and clients. This will involve gathering feedback from staff, clients, and significant others to identify areas that require improvement or adjustment. By conducting these assessments, we can ensure that the policies and protocols adequately address safety concerns and that the training materials effectively educate staff and clients.

In conclusion, managing change in an acute surgical ward requires effective change management strategies. The strategies proposed by Yoder-Wise and Menix (2007), including communication, empowerment, support, Education, involvement, and evaluation, can help ensure a smooth transition to the new policy of allowing one significant other to stay overnight with each client. Applying these strategies will help reduce anxiety and resistance to change, empower staff, and ensure the safety and comfort of clients and their significant others.


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Choi, S., & Kim, M. (2019). Effects of structural empowerment and professional governance on autonomy and job satisfaction of the Korean nurses. Journal of nursing management27(8), 1664-1672.

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Talevski, J., Wong Shee, A., Rasmussen, B., Kemp, G., & Beauchamp, A. (2020). Teach-back: A systematic review of implementation and impacts. PloS one15(4), e0231350.

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Yoder-Wise, P. S., & Sportsman, S. (2022). Leading and Managing in Nursing E-Book. Elsevier Health Sciences.