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Literary Analysis - Symbolism in Charlie Fishs "Death by Scrabble"

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Introduction

Norwood | ________________ Hanna Norwood LeQuire English 1000 2/27/2012 Symbolism in ?Death by Scrabble? There is an immense amount of symbolism in Charlie Fish? ?Death by Scrabble? from the beginning of the story. It guides the plot to its climatic, surprise ending. This is a humorous story that shows a conflict between a reserved husband and his wife who only communicate and fight through the use of Scrabble words. With the start of the Scrabble game with the word ?BEGIN,? that foreshadows and displays to the reader that there is a connection between the words and the real life situation. (5) Symbolism through the scrabble letters and words is an important aspect of this short story because it?s making up for the lack of communication in the couple?s relationship. The Scrabble game is a method of communicating what they?re both thinking at the moment, and eventually leads them up to determining what happens by their word play. When the wife plays, she puts down ?JINXED? which is a significant word paired with the hateful dialogue of the husband. ...read more.

Middle

Its a weird story and definitely a sign that a situation could arise from that story. His rack of words then spells out ?MIHZPAH? which is ironic because the words ?MIZPAH? mean ?an emotional bond between two people that are separated,? and they definitely have the opposite kind of relationship than the definition. (dictionary.com) When the wife plays the words ?SWEATIER? the room instantly gets hotter and Charlie?s rage is building up to extremes. He then plays ?HUMID and he mentions that he ?hopes she has lousy letters? and that ?he hates her more? (14,15) this signifies that she?s almost talking back to him by using similar words to show him up. That sets him off, and he plays the word ?CHEATING? as a method of telling her he cheated, and then the air conditioning unit then explodes. She asks ?if he cheated? and he doesn?t even reply back to her. They both have said few words during this whole time, which is un-regular and clearly means there?s a major problem with the relationship. ...read more.

Conclusion

He?s pissed, and he wants a word that will end his wife. She plays ?CAUTION? which is foreshadowing, he then is annoyed because he has no letters to make a word he wants, plus the letter B that he?s chewing on frustrated by his useless letters then it ?hits him? and he plays ?QUAKE? expecting a huge earthquake to come and kill his wife. (40) He thinks that he has the power of her fate in his own hands, but then she plays ?DEATH? and then simultaneously the room starts to shake. He then ?gasps with surprise? as the B that he was chewing on gets lodged in his throat and he falls to the floor gasping for air. (44) His wife does nothing, at all. This indicates that she too felt the same way in the relationship, and that she wanted him dead just like he wanted her. This whole short story represents how the lack of communication in relationships quickly causes friction that leads to not being able to stand the other person. And for this couple, for the present time the only way they really wanted to truly talk to each other was by playing Scrabble. ...read more.

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