“The Secret Life of Walter Mitty”

“The Secret Life of Walter Mitty” may be a funny story, however the once mighty Mitty is a tragic hero who had to live with his domineering wife in a demanding and competitive environment making him seek solace in daydream. this paper argues that   “The Secret Life of Walter Mitty” a tragedy.

From “Overshoes,” to “hand gloves” witty has to deal with all forms of overbearing demands from his wife. His downfall is mainly though a combination of hubris, excessive pride, and the will of his wife. His main goals were to be a pilot, a surgeon, and a soldier come to an abrupt end as he faces the firing squad. For example, he dreamed that he is a commander in an 8-engine Navy hydroplane, he also dreams that he is a famous surgeon asked to help a rich Englishman, who is a friend of President Roosevelt, he also wanted to be a criminal, as an accused witness in a courtroom trial as can be deciphered from his dreams. However, a combinations of hubris, and nagging from his wife lead to his downfall (.  He later on preferred to face the firing squad in dreamland, than meet his domineering wife.

His wish to become an important man in the society inevitable encounters limits and his flow in reason lead to his premature death by firing squad. His main hamartia was induced by the hubris of his wife and the irrational society in which he lived in his secretes life in dreamland. His fortune changes from that of a flourishing captain, important and surgeon to a criminal whose crime warrants Death by firing squad.

“The Secret Life of Walter Mitty miss tragedy as a hero downfall is caused by a combination of fate, arrogance, and the will of gods.  He knew the will of the society, the gods, and his wife all along, but his life ends before he actualizes his goals in life.


Dorsch, T. R., (1965). trans. and ed. Aristotle Horace Longinus: Classical Literary Criticism. New York: Penguin


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