Symbolism, Imagery, and Theme Compared Through the Stories “the Cask of Amontillado” and “the Scarlet Ibis”

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Symbolism, Imagery, and Theme Compared Through the Stories “The Cask of Amontillado” and “The Scarlet Ibis”

In “The Cask of Amontillado” and “The Scarlet Ibis” dark symbols and tones shape the plot, which allows man’s inhumanity to man, as a theme, to be expected. Both authors use imagery to allow readers to paint a picture of each setting in their mind. Also, each author adds in many symbols to make a concrete object into an abstract idea. In “The Cask of Amontillado” written by Edgar Allan Poe and “The Scarlet Ibis” written by James Hurst symbols, imagery, and the theme of man’s inhumanity to man are used to uniquely explain each story line.

As the plot of “The Cask of Amontillado” and “The Scarlet Ibis” unravel, both authors introduce symbols. In “The Cask if Amontillado”, Poe gives a new layer to the name Fortunato. It means fortunate, which is far from the description of his fate. Poe writes, “The thousands of injuries I had borne as best I could, but when he ventured upon insult I vowed revenge.” (Poe 5). Here Poe clearly states Montresor’s intentions, and those were less than fortunate for Fortunato. Poe also uses midnight to represent the end, or in this case death. As Montresor concludes his daunting mission midnight begins to progress towards him. “It was now midnight and [Montresor] task was drawing to a close.” (Poe 10). In “The Scarlet Ibis”, Hurst uses the go-cart Daddy built for Doodle to symbolize two different meanings. In the beginning, the go-cart symbolized Doodle’s limitations and disability. For example Hurst writes, “…Daddy had built him a go-cart and I had to pull him around.” (Hurst 556). This shows how the go-cart limited Doodle early on in the novel, but as Doodle begins to walk and overcomes more setbacks the go-cart begins symbolizing his accomplishments. As displayed in the quote, “…Doodle had learned to walk well and his go-cart was put up in the barn loft…” (Hurst 559) the reader can gather that Doodle is now moving on to...
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