Friday, May 8, 2009

Short Stories- "The Knife" By Judah Waten Textual Analysis

Short Stories- "The Knife" By Judah Waten Textual Analysis - College Essay - Sarzg
Short Stories- "The Knife" By Judah Waten Textual Analysis
Title -The Knife
Author - Judah Waten
Anthology - Spectrum One – Narrative Short Stories. pg 133

The Knife written by Judah Waten, is a short story about a young Italian- Plinio, who has immigrated to Australia from a ‘poor village in Calabria, in a very desolate part of Southern Italy'.
Plinio then starts to reminisce about the life he had back home and the reader learns that he lived in poverty and had a very modest life. It then goes on to describe Plinio walking home from work one night and he sees Mavis Keer- an attractive girl with a group of friends and her boyfriend Tommy Lawler.
Tommy notices Plinio looking at Mavis and is jealous of him, his dislike for Plinio deepens because he is Italian, so Tommy decides to humiliate him. The next time Tommy sees Plinio he knocks his hat into the gutter. The group of friends start to laugh and tease Plinio, which causes Plinios pride to be deeply hurt.
Plinio then decides to avoid the group from fear of being bashed to death. Plinio is then walking home late one night and sees Tommy and his friends. Tommy decides to bash up Plinio so he can look tough infront of Mavis. As Tommy starts to punch Plinio, he pulls out his father's knife, out of anger and frustration Plinio stabs Tommy. Tommy's friends all run away leaving Plinio, Tommy and Mavis in the street. The police and ambulance arrive as people start to crowd around shouting "A knife . . . he's got a knife."

Title- The Knife – The knife (as in the object) is very symbolic in the story as it shows a difference between the two cultures and what they associate with it. For example Plinio sees the knife as a ‘symbol of his coming of age . . . his manhood' and he proudly wore his knife because it is associated with honour and respect. Where as the people in Australia who encounter the knife see it as a weapon and associate it with evilness as shown in then quote ‘all their...

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