An Occurrence At Owl Creek Bridge Essay

1025 Words Feb 13th, 2015 null Page
Ambrose Bierce is an American author, who wrote the short story “An Occurrence at Owl Creek Bridge” which was published in 1890 (399). This short story is divided into three distinct sections, and follows the inevitable execution of a man named Payton Farquhar. The story begins with Farquhar, a citizen Confederacy sympathizer, bound and awaiting his execution by hanging on a railroad bridge overlooking the treacherous waters of Owl Creek. Just before the Union Army sergeant executes the final obligations of Farquhar’s hanging the story cuts to the second section. In the second part the story turns back in time to reveal that Farquhar is a wealthy plantation owner who greatly wants to prove his loyalty to the southern cause. His opportunity arises when a Union scout, discussed as a confederate soldier, relays to Farquhar that it would be a great service if he were to burn down Owl Creek Bridge. The story jumps forward in time to the final part, where Farquhar has a fantasy of miraculously escaping his capture and returning to his wife, but just as he begins to embrace her, reality strikes and his body is left swinging under the bridge. In the short story “An Occurrence at Owl Creek Bridge” Ambrose Bierce employs magnificent symbolism, vivid imagery, and a theme of time in order to realistically depict death and the horrific nature of war. Bierce uses time as a theme throughout the entire story to depict the reality and inevitableness of death. Bierce plays with time in…

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