Theme Of Water In Annie John

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"Water is the most critical resource issue of our lifetime and our children's lifetime. The health of our waters is the principal measure of how we live on the land." Luna Leopold.
Annie John, a novel written by Jamaica Kincaid focuses on Annie, a young, intelligent, and unruly young girl growing up in Antigua. This novel highlights Annie growing up from age ten to seventeen through the use of literary techniques of motifs, or recurring symbols. The motif of water and sea in Annie John forms Annie from childhood to adulthood showing that this is a true bildungsroman.
During Annie's youth, she and her mother have a strong and developing relationship expressed through water. Annie and her mother have many special experiences together. Annie
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The impression of being controlled by water is displayed in her mother's words after an interaction with a male acquaintance. "The word "slut" (in patois) was repeated over and over, until suddenly I felt as if I were drowning in a well but instead of the well being filled with water it was filled with the word "slut" and it was pouring through my eyes, my ears, my nostrils, my mouth." (Kincaid 102) This quote shows Annie drowning in her emotions and her mother's thoughts towards her. Annie felt warmth and comfort from her mother when she was younger, but as she grows up, she physically and emotionally feels the anger, hate, and frustration from her mother. Annie feels drowned in the water that embodies her mother, the once beautiful relationship that had, is quickly depleting. Towards the end of the book, Annie struggles with depression. She dreams: "All the water from the sea filled me up, from my toes to my head, and I swelled up very big. But then little cracks began to appear in me and the water started to leak out… I burst open. The water ran back and made up the sea again, and again I was walking in the warm soot – only this time wet and in tatters and not going anywhere in particular." (Kincaid 112) Annie describes her emotions as water, to show that she can only hold in so much until she bursts. Though Annie has let out her emotions, she feels as if she is torn apart and going …show more content…
Water used to represent a sanctuary, but now it represents the distance between her and her mother. As Annie grows up, she battles with her mother and depression, with water as a common symbol. Water represents the ever-changing relationship between Annie and her mom, their relationship changes with Annie's age and emotional

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