Essay Example on Mrs. Rowlandson's Captivity and Restoration: An Archetypal Model

Paper Type:  Essay
Pages:  5
Wordcount:  1132 Words
Date:  2023-04-09

Mrs. Rowlandson's narrative of her captivity and restoration is among the most often cited instances of a captivity narrative and is usually viewed as an archetypal model. The narrative is fascinating to read as it highlights a sequence of encounters with the Indian captors; it explains the treatments that Mrs. Rowlandson received from the captors, thereby capturing the form of intercultural contact. The narrative has been written with the intention of others reading it, thereby serving as a lesson to people in society. Given this, the narrative can be understood in terms of how Mary wanted to represent her encounter to the readers in society rather than being understood as an entirely truthful experience. The publishing is reviewed as a faith narrative to understand the belief that God is the most potent agent who punishes and saves Christian believers (Scarbrough 124). Reading the narrative as a reaffirmation of faith in God, the reader gets to understand that the narrative thoroughly explains the Lord's doings as well as dealings in one's life. Also, the narrative displays the faith concept as the belief in God's promises concerning the restoration from captivity.

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Mrs. Rowlandson's narrative conveys a view of "Sovereignty and Goodness of God," thereby providing the reader with a different perspective; the reading can, therefore, be read as a reaffirmation of faith in God. The narrative can be regarded as a faith narrative because the narrative also highlights God's doings as well as dealings in a person's life. In this case, the narrative vividly portrays the concept of faith through the faithfulness of God in the restoration from hardships such as captivity. Mary explains how the Indians, who operated in large numbers, managed to demolish the Lancaster by setting their houses on fire as smoke ascended to heaven (Rowlandson 73). With the context of Deuteronomy 32:39, the narrative can be reviewed as a faith narrative because the verse states "See now that I, even I, am he, and there is no god with me: I kill, and I make alive; I wound, and I heal: neither is there any that can deliver out of my hand" (The Bible). The destruction of property by the Indian captors represents an aspect of power to inflict suffering upon others, and so the affected people in Mrs. Rowlandson's community were in a faith-testing moment in their lives - whether God would restore them from their painful situation.

In the narrative, Mary explains how mothers and children were in pure agony, crying for themselves. Most of them were about to despair, while others depended on their Lord for protection. They wanted their Lord to intervene and save them from the attack by Indians. Mary's narrative depicts God as the people's helper as well as a protector. At one instance, Mary says that their help is always in him (Rowlandson 74). This shows the aspect of strong faith that Mary possessed, for she believed that help would only come from Almighty God. The narrative is also reviewed as a faith narrative in the sense that Mary has acknowledged her gift of life, which is a blessing in disguise. She is thankful to God, and this can be related to the message in 2 Corinthians 12:9 which states, "My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness" (The Bible). Mary further realizes that she is alive because of God's Grace, reaffirming her belief that a person's lifespan is so short because the attack demonstrates the lack of a guaranteed life as it can be withdrawn at any moment. Mrs. Rowlandson acknowledges the presence of the numerous uncertainties that life presents. This accrues from the treatments she received from the Indians - it was seasonal in that, at times, they treated her well, others worse. The narrative can equally be explained as a faith narrative because the subject of unwavering faith in God's will is addressed. Mrs. Rowlandson kept a strong faith regardless of the hardships she underwent; She continued to appreciate all the events that accompanied her during the journey, declaring that the events occurred as God's will. Mary remained positive all through while making references to the Bible escapades that resemble hers.

Reading the narrative as a reaffirmation of faith in God changes the meaning in the sense that a reader seizes to see the narrative as a capture-story; instead, one finds the endorsement of the faith in God and how restoration is fulfilled by trusting in God's will. There is a concrete reaffirmation of faith in God because the story is based on a truthful and precise account of Mary's real-life experiences that she encountered under the Indians' rule. Also, the meaning of the narrative changes because the content shifts the focus of the capture-perspective story and focuses on depicting and making people understand God's will and the faithfulness of his restoration promises. The dimension portrayed is that of an explanation regarding how God protects and allows people to experience life temptations through challenges before He proves his miracles and Grace. The narrative becomes a tale surrounding the good of having faith in God because suffering comes from God as well.


In conclusion, the narrative is seen to describe the experiences faced by Mary during the capture-period at a broader view. The story can also be reviewed as a faith narrative, and this is justified by the instances in which Mary uses biblical references and comparisons to affirm the faith in God. Mary assesses her current situation without losing her faith in God regardless of the hardships she undergoes. Mary believes that God decrees the happenings, and it is through His will that she can receive salvation. She acknowledges her situation and continues to thank God for life because a person's lifespan is short and can be terminated at any time, especially during the period of unrest. During most of her captive moments, she experiences several uncertainties that were seasonal. Sometimes she was treated with goodness while other times without. The faith in God is concrete in the story because of the experiences that Mary faced while in Indian captivity. Therefore, reading the story as a reaffirmation of faith in God changes the meaning because it proves the good in Christianity while trying to make readers understand God's will and the faithfulness in His restoration promises. The narrative tends to explain the power of protection present in God and how he allows people to experience temptations before being saved. The narrative, therefore, endorses the importance of having faith in God in one's doings and dealings among its readers.

Works Cited

Scarbrough, Elizabeth. "Mary Rowlandson: The Captive Voice." Undergraduate Review 7.1 (2011): 121-125.

Rowlandson, Mary White, and Joseph Rowlandson. The narrative of the captivity and restoration of Mrs. Mary Rowlandson. J. Wilson and son, 1903.

The Bible. Authorized King James Version, Oxford UP, 1998.

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Essay Example on Mrs. Rowlandson's Captivity and Restoration: An Archetypal Model. (2023, Apr 09). Retrieved from

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