Sexual Symbols In The Black Hole

1700 words - 7 pages

Adolescence is a period in life when individuals learn who they are and shape their identities in relation to their experiences and others around them, such as role models, peers, and family; as a consequence adolescence has always been considered a crucial developmental stage. In Black Hole “the bug” only affects teens, which suggests that the teen plague is not a metaphor for AIDs, but is actually the social, physical, and emotional turning point in which the character s mature from teens to young adults. Similarity the teens infected with “the bug” share other attributes besides the physical manifestations and isolation, such as between their lifestyles: sex, drugs, and symbols. In the novel, Black Hole, Charles Burns communicates the transition from adolescence to adulthood through the use of a sexually transmitted disease called “the bug”. This version of adolescence is reinforced by Chris and Keith’s mutations; skin-peeling and sperm/ tadpole-like protuberances, and respectively, they feel secure in their organic surroundings, like the forestry and waters. However it is essential that they flee from that environment so that are able to blossom from undeveloped minors to full grown adults.

Charles Burns is not taking a moral bearing but a realistic approach on adolescent sex, hence his insertion of Dee and his girlfriend Jill, who sustain a sexual relationship while remaining “bug” less (No. 6).Though AIDS can be taken from this in that it does not affect those who do not have it. However, Charles Burns only hints at the possibility that transmission of the teen plague results from unprotected sex No. 2 and 4 of the series provide virtuous istances to support this position, the only known cause in Black Hole is sexual intercourse with a diseased teen. Simultaneously, Burns distresses this postulation; when Dave spits on a verbally abusive customer at Kentucky Fried Chicken: “See how easy that was? That’s all it takes…a little spit. Some saliva…and now you’re one of us” (No. 11).

Transition from adolescence to adulthood
Black Hole is consistent with Freudian aspects of psychology regarding adolescence in that vaginal openings surface in Black Hole as curved branches, grass, cuts, and tears. The characters in the Black Hole religiously experience dreams and visions. These dreams contain symbols of sexual growth, fear, and guilt. Throughout Black hole, the teens affected with “the bug” are the only characters, which experience these dreams and the unconscious symbols in the dreams. For example, In Rob’s dream about Chris, For instance, guilt is illustrated by Rob saying: God, I’m sorry Chris! I-I thought you were…” and “I’m sorry, Chris...I’m really sorry” (No.5).
Alienation/ social sigma

For many people including myself, perceptibly high school felt like an infinite, unavoidable vacuum free of air or light. Black Hole employs the nastiest ingredients of budding adulthood, such as changing bodies, peer discrimination and sex....

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