Theme Of Appointment In Samarara

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Encounter with Death
“I will go to Samarra and there Death will not find me.” These are the words of the merchant’s servant in the short story ‘Appointment in Samarra’. In this tale set in the Mid-East, a servant has a chance encounter with the personified version of Death and tries to escape to another village, only for the master to later find out that Death herself was planning on meeting the servant there. The actual date this story was written is unknown, but it was retold in 1933 by W. Somerset Maugham. This fictional piece however, has many lessons that can be drawn from it today. For one, death is not something to be escaped from; once it is a person’s time, nothing he or she can do will postpone it. Another would be of how mortality is something many people are afraid of, and the third is one can never outsmart or outplay fate.
In the story, death is not a stage in life or simply a thing that is intangible. Death is personified as a living, breathing person who speaks. In fact here, Death is the narrator. Throughout ancient history, the Mortality had been represented to be a female figure, as it is in this story.
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Mortality is defined as being “the state of being subject to death” (dictionary); all living creatures on earth are indeed mortal. Thanatophobia is a common fear that displays itself through many others such as the fear of pain and of the unknown. In “Appointment in Samarra”, the servant is in such dismay of Death’s sudden appearance and becomes set on running away. This portrays the common ‘fight or flight’ response many have towards a stressor; which in this case would be the end of life. It tends to be people either avoid this topic and pretend such an obvious part of life doesn’t exist, or that they give death an outright ‘stand-off’ as if they cannot be affected by it at all. Either reaction shows how much of an impact the end of the road can have on a

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