The Effects Of Symbols In Tobias Wolff's Say Yes

612 words - 2 pages

The Effects of Symbols In Tobias Wolff's "Say Yes"

     The author of the short story "Say Yes," Tobias Wolff, uses a number of symbols
to express his different views on racism throughout the story. Wolff uses this literary
device to express a message to his readers. Symbols, something representing something
else by association resemblance or convention, are used efficiently in this short story.
Wolff uses colors to symbolize a hatred for an alternative race in this short story. The
husband more than once makes reference to dark colors which shows the reader that the
husband sees this world in black and white. The husband sees the world as good vs. evil,
white vs. black society. Furthermore, the reference to color in the short story ?Say Yes?,
symbolizes the husbands strong dislike for African Americans.

Wolff symbolize the husbands strong dislike for African Americans when the husband
states, ?The water had gone a flat gray? (Wolff 518). To some this statement might not
mean much. Wolff?s decision to make reference to dark colors symbolizes the characters
dislike for an alternative race. The choice of dark colors shows it is one of the African
American race. The husband made reference to colors briefly after he and his wife started
discussing differences over the idea of interracial relationships. The heated argument
caused the wife to clean the dishes poorly resulting in dirty dishes. The husband threw the
dishes back into the sink and the water seemed to turn a ?flat gray? (Wolff 518). The
husbands only description was of the dark water in the sink. Wolff again indirectly shows
the husbands feelings towards African-Americans through symbolism. This symbol
contributes to Wolff?s message or theme showing the husband?s strong dislike for African

After the author uses this symbolization of a ?flat gray?, the wife ?plunged her hands
under the surface? (Wolff 518) and cut her finger on the silverware. She then cries out as
her thumb bleeds from...

Find Another Essay On The Effects of Symbols In Tobias Wolff's Say Yes

A Comparison of Values in The Rich Brother by Tobias Wolff

656 words - 3 pages In Tobias Wolff’s 1985 short story “The Rich Brother,” we are introduced to two brothers. According to Wolf, you cannot even tell that they are brothers because of their physical differences, but as the story goes into more detail we can tell that they are different in every aspect. One of the major differences is that one is wealthy and the other is always in need of financial assistance. The older brother, Pete, is a successful real estate

Symbols of escapism in the Glass Menagerie

785 words - 3 pages There are many symbols of escapism presented in the Glass Menagerie and each character has its own symbols connected to it. The characters will, however, only ever be able to escape their '2 by 4' situation for a brief moment. This essay will discuss the characters in the play and how they are linked to the symbols of escapism with reference to the play.In the play Tom becomes highly pre-occupied with the magician and his ability to escape the

Symbols of Americans in Inherit the Wind

1785 words - 8 pages lived through the “Red Scare” trials, Jerome Lawrence and Robert E. Lee, addresses the oppression of the McCarthy trials by a meek character called Bert Cates throughout their play named Inherit the Wind. A nationally recognized lawyer, Henry Drummond, uses his gift of freedom of speech to support Cates. Cates love interest, Rachel Brown, grows intellectually and portrays the change that Lawrence and Lee want to see in Americans. Furthermore

Dangerous Secrets in Tobias Wolff?s Hunters in the Snow

855 words - 3 pages Dangerous Secrets in Tobias Wolff's Hunters in the Snow In Tobias Wolff's 'Hunters in the Snow', the three main characters each have secrets which they are concealing despite their friendships. These obscuring truths later cause trouble for each of the characters and will lead to their destruction. How will their decisions and lies impact their relationships? The first character introduced in the story is Tub. Tub is portrayed as being

Insight into "Hunters in the Snow" - By: Tobias Wolff

589 words - 2 pages coffee. The whole time Kenny is left in the bed of the truck freezing. Later on after leaving the tavern, they stop at a roadhouse to eat, leaving Kenny once again freezing in the bed of the truck. When leaving the restaurant, Tub realizes he had lost the directions to the hospital, Frank then responds saying he knows the way. If Frank really knew the way, why did he not say anything when Tub was writing the directions. The story ends with Frank

Analysis of The Rich Brother by Tobias Wolff

513 words - 2 pages Analysis of The Rich Brother by Tobias Wolff Tobias Wolff’s “The Rich Brother” is a story of two brothers, Donald and Pete. These brothers have very contrasting lifestyles; Pete is a successful businessman with a wife and kids. Donald, on the other hand, is an outcast. He’s unemployed and irresponsible. He lives his life as a vagabond. Despite these facts, the successful brother, Pete, still lacks the self-esteem he desperately craves

Symbols and Symbolism Essay - Use of Symbols in Nathaniel Hawthorne's The Scarlet Letter

920 words - 4 pages Use of Symbols in The Scarlet Letter       In World Book Dictionary, a symbol is defined as something that stands for or represents something else, especially an idea, quality, or condition. Symbols can be objects, characters, figures, or colors used to represent ideas or concepts. In the novel The Scarlet Letter, by Nathaniel Hawthorne, there are many symbols that are throughout the novel. While symbols can be

The Powers of the Symbols in "Lord of the Flies"

1064 words - 4 pages ! There isn’t a tribe for you any more! The conch is gone” (Golding. 200). Lord of the Flies is a book about symbols that have powers. One of the symbols which was one of the most important symbols in the book, was that the conch which the boys used. The conch’s role in the book was to lead the boys to civilization to get rescued from the island. Another symbol which is the sow’s head was also one of the important symbols in the book was the

Symbols and Symbolism in The House of the Seven Gables

3398 words - 14 pages Symbolism in The House of the Seven Gables        American literature reflects life and the struggles faced during existence. Symbols are an eloquent way for an author to create a more fully developed work of art. The stories themselves tell a tale; however, an author also uses symbols to relay his message in a more subtle manner. Nathaniel Hawthorne was one of the earliest authors to use symbols as an integral part of his plots. This is

Analysis of archetypal symbols in the film "The Last Wave"

1758 words - 7 pages indeed what few films since than have done. Peter Weir deliberately made the movie to show the Aboriginal people's ideas and culture to the world, and in doing so exposed the cultural subjugation the Aboriginal people are going through. He made a triumphing film about current social issues, and an in - depth look into another culture, and cleverly disguised it as a suspense thriller about strange weather. He packed it full of symbols and

Nathaniel Hawthorne's symbols in "The house of seven gables".

2570 words - 10 pages decaying. Clifford is readily seen in this manner by Phoebe, when his entrance into the room 'made her feel as if a ghost were coming into the room' (Hawthorne 103). Clifford's clothes are even used as symbols of the effects that the house has on all of its prisoners. Clifford is seen in a 'dressing-gown of faded damask', that has been soiled over time by the house (Hawthorne 103). Hawthorne also mentions the carpet in the Colonel's room that

Similar Essays

Tobias Wolff’s Story Say Yes Essay

973 words - 4 pages Tobias Wolff’s story “say yes” is a short story about an argument of whether white people should marry black people between a man and his wife, and finally the man changed his idea and “say yes” to his wife. At first I just think this story is just narrating a story about different ideas between husband and wife and how the husband makes the concession finally. After read the story for a couple of times, I found this story has something

An Analytical View Of Say Yes By Tobias Wolff

910 words - 4 pages An Analytical View of Say Yes by Tobias Wolff "Say Yes" is an emotional sorry of love and its pitfalls. The husband loves his wife dearly but fails to really know that all she wants to hear is affirmation of her proposal of love despite the racial undertone involve. The Husband does not come to the realization of this concept until the end of the story when he accepts the proposal and puts forth the

This Essay Concentrates On The Central Issue Of "Siblings In Conflict." It Is An Analysis Of Tobias Wolff's "The Richer Brother." It Has Parenthentical Documentation And Is Solid.

1205 words - 5 pages extent of his spirituality, or is it how he chooses to share his wealth with others, whether it is material or spiritual? Are we really our "brother's keeper" or are we keepers of only our own wants and desires? These are all questions posed by Tobias Wolff in his short story, "The Rich Brother." However, he provides an underlying answer to these questions. Is Pete really the richer brother because he has more material possessions? Wolff leads the

Say Yes To Animal Bill Of Rights

650 words - 3 pages mistreat them harmfully. Animals should not have to deal with cruel killing. People often ask if animals should have rights, and quite simply, the answer is “Yes!” Animals surely deserve to live their lives free from suffering and exploitation. Animals should be given rights simply because animals are living creatures. Our government “should extend rights to a wide range of nonhuman animals”(Yong 5) because animals feel pain and specially