"Bloodchild" and Other Stories Symbols, Allegory and Motifs
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In the afterword for the story “Bloodchild” the author mentions that it is her version of a story about male pregnancy. But the story despite its uncomfortable moments transcends gender, and it is a story about growing up and taking responsibility, making it a “coming of age” story. It also symbolizes sacrifice, as well as the process of pregnancy and birth.
Symbolism in “The Evening and the Morning and the Night”
The second story of her collection shows the author’s fascination with biology and diseases, as she mentions in the afterword. It shows people who are genetically predisposed for a disease that causes them to lose cognitive abilities and commit suicide. The symbolism of entrapment is present throughout the story, from the disease itself, the contained facility and finally the act in which the victims commit suicide by tearing apart their flesh as a way to escape. It is a literal representation of the notion of feeling trapped in your own skin.
“Speech Sounds” is a story that shows the importance of language. It portrays a dystopian society where people aren’t able to verbally communicate which lead to a disaster-ridden society. The author describes the inspiration behind the story, which is a bus incident where a man killed another man for the sole reason of not liking the way the other man looked at him. The story shows this deterioration of society based on petty emotions and jealousies and the importance the language has in differentiation of human from the other animal.
Religion and dreams
In the story “The Book of Martha” the author explores the theme of religion. The main protagonist of the story is literally put into God’s position deciding the fate of humanity. The main content of the story is her deciding what to choose to improve humanity and discussing the consequences of every choice with God. Finally, she decides that dreams are the best way to give the humanity a chance to improve.
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"Bloodchild" and Other Stories essays are academic essays for citation. These papers were written primarily by students and provide critical analysis of "Bloodchild" and Other Stories by Octavia E. Butler.