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Explore Symbols Or Strands Of Imagery Within The Novel. What Role Do They Play Within The Work?

1218 words - 5 pages

Explore symbols or strands of imagery within the novel. What role do they play within the work?We can appreciate how in the novel "The Thief and the dogs" theirs lot's of symbolism and imagery used by the writer to give better understanding of every character, of the setting in which the novel is taking place and the time where this novel is being developed.It immediately starts in chapter one, with a dominant imagery of animals. It instantly makes us realize as a reader that Nabawiyya and Ilish might be the dogs, which are referred in the novel's title. The use of this imagery is to help us understand how in this case dogs are seen in a negative way as creatures that represent disloyalty and deceit. Continuing with the idea of animal imagery, I can say that is used in a negative way with the use of terms like " You snake" or " You mangy dogs!" this are negative and actually harsh fragments of the text which make the use of animal imagery to reflect and help us emphasize the language use in those times, plus the personalities of the characters. Reinforcing the idea of using animal imagery, just that in this fragment of the text they are using this device to describe a character, in this case "Said's Daughter". "Like a mouse" with the use of this imagery, it emphasizes some features of the girl, she is a shy girl, and also it offers us as a reader to sympathize with the young girl and Said himself. Then also imagery is used to describe in a more deeper way the aspects of the character in this case "Said" "a man who can dive like a fish, fly like a hawk, scale walls like a rat…" this reinforces my idea that imagery is used to portray some qualities of himself, in this case they are positive qualities.As we continue on reading we can see in chapter two, animal imagery is used again "It was that dog who betrayed me", here Said refers to Ilish as "that dog who betrayed me." Also throughout this novel, we can assume that animal imagery will always be used in negative ways because in the title, the dogs are related to the thief therefore making the dogs antagonistic. In the other hand also in chapter two we can see a strong symbol, the Sheikh's house. The Sheikh's house is seen as a symbol for "peace" and for the escaping from reality. "In this strange house no door was ever closed - to a single room." Seeing that the doors are never closed, meaning that they are open for anyone, everybody is welcome to enter the Sheikh's house at anytime, reflecting Sheikh's warmth and generosity.In Chapter 4, this chapter once again reflects the writing style of Mahfouz, full with animal imagery. In the earlier chapters, the audience usually assumed that the imagery was used with negative references. However, in this chapter, Mahfouz chooses to use the imagery to describe Said, as he is walking towards Rauf Ilwan house. Said is described as stalking "…like a cat creeping on its belly toward a bewildered sparrow." Additionally, he can be seen as "crawling...

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