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Sorrowful Woman

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  • March 10, 2008
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Fictional characters are a central part of short stories that presents a broader aspect into the work itself. In an effort to do so, the author's use of many literary devices are essential in context such as the strong uses of imagery and characterizations; both having a significant influence that can set the overall tone of the story and allows readers to foreshadow the outcome. Other literary devices that are widely found are the conflict(s) between one or multiple characters and the symbolism of objects, animals, and other representations. "A Sorrowful Woman" by Gail Godwin, "A & P" by John Updike, and "Soldier's Home" by Ernest Hemingway are three selected short stories that contain the author's success with the strong usage of literary terms.

"A Sorrowful Woman" revolves around the life of a woman who is overwhelmed by her husband and son's presence; gradually withdrawing them completely out of her life. "..the husband durable, receptive, gentle; the child a tender golden three. The sight of them made her so sad and sick she did not want to see them ever again."(38) This reveals to the readers that the woman is resentful of her husband's strong health and her child's young age thus, begrudges them as her own life is depreciating. This is a good example of the woman's characterization because it describes her physical appearance and thoughts, as it also give the reader a glimpse of the overall tone to the story. " ‘The girl upsets me,' said the woman to her husband. Next morning she fired the girl"(40) This was referred to the girl who was hired to help take care of the child while the husband was at work and the woman's preoccupation with her illness is noted in that quote. She did not want to see her child too emtionally connected with the girl at the time of her passing because it would have been too painful for her to bear. The reader continues to take note of her withdrawal from the rest of the world. "The next day she moved her things into the...