Hey y’all! Wowzers! No one has posted on here in like FOREVER. All of us here at Author’s Press are truly sorry for neglecting this blog so. Hopefully we’ll be able to post more regularly on here in the months to come. Honestly, I haven’t really written any more chapters to my books. Really, the only things I’ve written in the past year are essays and literary analyses for school. So, due to lack of interesting stories, I’ve decided to post my essay entitled The American Camelot, that I wrote a year ago. Hope you enjoy!
Have you ever heard of the mythical city, Camelot? If that doesn’t ring a bell, then have you ever heard of King Arthur, Lancelot, or perhaps Guinevere? The Arthurian legend has been a popular history topic for years, amidst the fact that Camelot might not have existed at all. Really, the legend is just so captivating with it’s tales of knights, romances, quests, and kingship, that we just choose to believe such a staggering story. While the Camelot spoke about during the Renaissance might not have existed, there is an American “Camelot” spoken about by one of America’s beloved first ladies, ‘Jackie’ Kennedy. And this “Camelot” was lived out not to long ago by America’s own Kennedy family.
In order for us to get a full understanding about Camelot and the Kennedys we must first select the opportune roles for each of the Kennedys. Camelot wouldn’t be anything without it’s royal majesty, King Arthur. When comparing the Kennedy family to that of Camelot’s, without a doubt the 35th president of the United States of America, John F. Kennedy, takes the role of Arthur. “For with Truth and Faith girded upon you, you shall be as well able to fight all your battles as did that noble hero of old, whom men called King Arthur.” (Pyle, 80) Just as Arthur led his country with dignity and optimism, so did Mr. Kennedy lead his country.
The role of Lancelot, one of Arthur’s most trusted knights, belongs to John’s brother, Robert. Bobby lands this role for not only being a great brother and uncle to the Kennedys in their time of despair, but also for having a rumored affair with Jackie. “The great and guilty love he bare the Queen, In battle with the love he bare his lord, Had marr’d his face, and mark’d it ere his time.” (Tennyson, 245) Just as Lancelot fell in love with Guinevere, Bobby was rumored to have fallen in love with Jackie either before or after the death of her husband.
The son of Lancelot by Elaine, Galahad, served his country well. He sought out the Holy Grail and succeeded with his quest. The role of young Galahad fits with John’s youngest brother, Ted. Ted sought out universal health care for all. Even though he may not have succeeded as Galahad did, he was able to put the magnificent idea out there and call for a change. So the role of Galahad goes to Ted.
And lastly, we have the nation’s beloved Jacqueline Kennedy. Tennyson says in Le Morte d’Arthur that, “Guinevere was the most beautiful of all women and Arthur loved her dearly.” Jackie takes the role of Guinevere not only for being the wife of the president (Arthur), but also for having a recognizable style, for being very beautiful in many ways, and for having had a rumored affair with Robert (Lancelot).
When one hears the name Guinevere, we immediately think of a tragic love affair. We don’t think of a woman who led America through sorrowful times, who was strong for her family and for her husband, and someone who was an influential first lady to us all. Therefore, we must remember Jackie not as a Guinevere, but as a strong, influential woman, just as she wanted us to remember her husband. Jackie was the very person to come up with the nickname “Camelot” for her family’s dynasty. A few days after the assassination of John F. Kennedy on November 22, 1963, Jackie was interviewed by the people of Life Magazine. She stated that she wanted the nation to remember her husband as a man who led America into a period of hope and prosperity.
Even though John’s time as president was cut very short, he led the U.S during the height of the Cold War, focused on our relations with the Soviet Union, and he encouraged NASA to go to the moon. “We choose to go to the moon”, he stated. “We choose to go to the moon in this decade and do the other things, not because they are easy, but because they are hard.” And this is what kind of person Jackie wanted America to remember him as.
She famously stated in that interview, “and the song he loved most came at the very end of this record, the last side of Camelot, sad Camelot… Don’t let it be forgotten, that once there was a spot, for one brief shining moment that was known as Camelot.” A quote that has been remembered for decades was said in so little amount of time. The story behind Camelot, she said, was every night John would play a record from the musical, Camelot. The songs would start off bright, cheery, and optimistic. Then the last song she stated, “the last side of Camelot, sad Camelot”, was sorrowful and very sad. And this is how Jackie described her husband’s time in office.
Nothing could be more fitting for a man who led America with optimism and gave it hope. Today we remember the Kennedy’s family legacy as an American Camelot; a story that starts off in prosperity but ends in despair. Nevertheless, neither the Renaissance version of Camelot or the American Camelot will never be forgotten. We shall always remember the Kennedys as a period of Camelot, just as Jackie wanted.
written by: Cupcakegirl10
Hope you enjoyed! And thank you for sticking with us throughout this past year! God bless!