Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item: http://hdl.handle.net/1946/32155
This essay examines the Hero’s Journey of Roland Deschain and his companions in Stephen King’s The Dark Tower series (1982-2007). The essay begins by looking at Stephen King as an author, his extraordinary career and why so many critics simply dismiss him due to the nature of his work. Then, The Dark Tower series is discussed as well as its connection to Robert Browning’s poem “Childe Roland to the Dark Tower Came” (1855). Furthermore, Roland, the protagonist of the series, is viewed with regards to the duality of his role as both a hero and an antihero. Roland is examined through the concept of the Dark Triad of Personality, explaining how he falls into the category of an antihero and why it is necessary for the completion of his journey that he make critical changes to his character. Roland’s heroic qualities are also examined along with his journey of self-discovery and continual change as the series progresses and what effects this might have on the series. Moreover, the characters and series as a whole are compared to the stages of Christopher Vogler’s Writer’s Journey (1992), while Joseph Campbell’s concepts in A Hero with a Thousand Faces (1949) are also referenced. Each stage of Vogler’s theory is examined and compared with King’s narrative, exploring the similarities as well as the discrepancies. Characters and events of the series are explored with regards to the manifestations and variations of the stages of the Hero’s Journey as extrapolated by Vogler’s theories.
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