Other elements that are present in this novel are symbols and metaphors. Symbols are the use of some unrelated idea to represent something else. Metaphors are direct comparisons made between characters and ideas. There are many symbols and metaphors used by the author such as:

1. Tom mutters as he leaves Dana that it seems that she is there to be Rufus' caregiver. In this sense, she is a symbol of all that keeps him alive, and as a caregiver, she becomes the object of his obsessive love.

2. The map of Maryland that Dana is forced to burn is a symbol of freedom as is the North Star, which will have to serve in its place.

3. Dana is also a caregiver of Alice, both as a friend and as the one who must assure that Alice gives birth to Hagar.........

Another element found in this book is a motif. A motif is a recurring thematic element in the development of an artistic or literary work. There is one important motif in Kindred: the motif of a paradox, a seemingly contradictory statement that may nonetheless be true, flows throughout the story. Some examples of paradox include:

1. The author never explains why time travel would just suddenly happen to Dana. This is the beginning of a realization for the reader that the author doesn't need to explain it. Her purpose is beyond the science fiction of the story. It is ultimately more about the history and the psychology of the......

..........8. Dana convinces Alice to go to bed with Rufus. It's another paradox that she has taken Alice through all the stages of healing and now has to help Rufus tear open her wound again.


The complete study guide is currently available as a downloadable PDF, RTF, or MS Word DOC file from the PinkMonkey MonkeyNotes download store. The complete study guide contains summaries and notes for all of the chapters; detailed analysis of the themes, plot structure, and characters; important quotations and analysis; detailed analysis of symbolism, motifs, and imagery; a key facts summary; detailed analysis of the use of foreshadowing and irony; a multiple-choice quiz, and suggested book report ideas and essay topics.


Cite this page:

Clapsaddle, Diane. "TheBestNotes on A Long Way Gone".