'Shiloh' Symbolism and Figurative Language Essay

1387 Words Oct 22nd, 2014 4 Pages
"Shiloh"
Symbol and figurative language

There are many examples of symbolism and figurative language in Bobbie Ann Mason 's short story "Shiloh." The importance of names: the main character is Leroy Moffitt, his wife is Norma Jean, her mother is Mabel, and their deceased son, who died of sudden infant death syndrome at the age of 4 months, is Randy. In the story, Norma Jean says to Leroy, while doing her studies for school, "Your name means the king." Leroy questions his place in their relationship, "Am I still the king around here?" She assures him she is not cheating on him, but his questioning is coming from a deeper place. Leroy is worried that he is not the powerful husband that he should be to his wife, and he can tell.
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Leroy dislikes the subdivisions and the author uses figurative language to describe this; "He cruises the new subdivisions, feeling like a criminal rehearsing for robbery." These "grand and complicated" houses depress him. The author directly tells of the hope the log cabin fills Leroy with, "Leroy has hopeful thought that they are sharing something, but he knows he is a fool to think this. Norma Jean is miles away.

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