A Walk To Remember


Symbols and Themes

The Bible—The Bible at first serves as the symbol of Jamie’s separateness. She carries it with her everywhere she goes. Rather than being known as the person she is, she is labeled by those who do not know her. It is these same people who do not know the Bible—and Landon is one of them. Once he gets to know Jamie better (and realizes with her sickness what he is about to lose), he begins to get to know the Bible, as well. The Bible serves as the link between the characters and their God, whom they worship through prayer and good deeds.

The Bible also serves as a symbol of Jamie’s connection to the dead. The Bible originally belonged to her deceased mother, which is why Jamie carries it everywhere she goes: so as to feel that she is “with” her mother. When Jamie gives the Bible to Landon, it is a gift not just of Scripture but also of herself; it is a symbolic exchange, the giving of one’s most important possession (the self) to another. Thus, the Bible ultimately represents the sacrifice of self that Jamie embodies.

Dying—Dying is a theme that is explored from the beginning of the novel to the end. The theme is lightly touched upon in the beginning when Landon reflects upon the death of the small town and its burial under the erection of suburban sprawl. The death of Jamie’s mother in childbirth, the fact that Landon and his friends hang out in a cemetery at night, the sickness that Jamie suffers from—each of these incidents highlights the theme of death and its unavoidable presence. In a sense, Landon experiences death himself when he begins to mature into an adult. His experience is the death of his adolescence. Jamie’s experience, however, heightens the reality of death and confirms the fact that all must die. The novel does not plumb the depths of what death is—whether it is the separation of soul and body, or whether it is the end of life altogether. The religious context of the novel suggests that death is a doorway to the afterlife. Still, the...

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Essays About A Walk To Remember