Short Story and Blue Elephant

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Analysis and interpretation of ”Elephant”

When all hopes and dreams are abandoned from our lives, the only thing we can do is taking advantage of others lives and make it our own. A life well planned can cost us our freedom and our ability to make decisions which are radically different from our previous ones. When desire, lust and romance have been deselected and ”the normal life” has taken its place. These obstacles are what William meets and sooner confronts in the short story by Polly Clark called ”Elephant”. The story begins in media res, so as soon as the story begins we get engulfed. We are meeting William sitting at his desk surrounded by notes and facts, where his Muse has left him and he has trouble finding inspiration writing biographies of pop singers as Christine, who he finds most adorable and attracted to (l. 46 – 51). The character Christine can be interpreted as Christina Aguilera, who, with her voice and her sexual behaviour, usually is very appealing for average men. William is the typical American man, who has settled down with his wife and currently is trying to start a family. Their marriage is not filled with romance and love as one could expect, but more with expectations and compromises and it furthermore seems like William does not want a baby as much as his wife does. His mind is filled with thoughts of his biographies and how Christine must have wanted him to write about her (l. 71-72 and 76). He easily gets distracted from his thoughts and one could imagine that they are filled with his lost childhood and the things he had never been able to do in life. His flash-back to the moment when his mother gives him the blue elephant (l. 59-66) could easily be interpreted as the childhood his mother tries to give him. However, at first he could not remember the blue elephant from his childhood. It had vanished from his memory. The only thoughts that go through his mind are how he can revenge his lost childhood and regain consciousness of...
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