Critical Essay On The Scarlet Ibis

When the narrator’s family found the Scarlet Ibis dead, it was noticeable that it had flown from somewhere extensively far away.

The Scarlet Ibis and Doodle did the exact same thing – they tried to work themselves more to hopefully accomplish more in the long run, but ultimately ended up killing themselves because their bodies weren’t made strong and proficient, they were made fragile and delicate.

At the first of the story, Doodle was believed not to even live a couple of days, but he pulled through and worked hard in learning how to walk, row, and do other basic activities.

As he kept trying to do more and more work each day, it put more and more stress and pain on his body and his weak heart, he overworked himself, and therefore, his body gave up under all the pressure.

In this short story, the Scarlet Ibis symbolized Doodle in numerous ways.

Both Doodle and the Scarlet Ibis were called “special” and “unlucky” when they were born.When the narrator said “When we reached Horsehead landing, lightning was flashing across half the sky, and thunder was drowning out the sound of the sea,” the mood quickly escalated to alarming and frightening, and it gave the reader more suspense.Literally seconds after this mood is created, the narrator goes back to this tree where his little brother Doodle is lying dead with blood dripping from his lips.” This sentence was the setting of the entire story and transmitted a thought that death would probably come in later somewhere in the story – and it did for both Doodle and the Scarlet Ibis.The storm that was occurring seconds before Doodle died was also an example of setting.The narrator then said “such a name sounds good only on a tombstone.” These examples of foreshadowing create a somber and solemn mood in the story because it is thought that even though actual death may not have yet happened in the story, the reader will still know that either death or something tragic likely will occur later in the story based on the wording the author chooses.Hurst’s style of descriptive and creative writing genuinely told the reader the importance of a supportive family and community in this Southern short story.“The Scarlet Ibis” is a touching story, full of symbolism and meaning.Various examples of how the setting reveals the mood of a story are found in “The Scarlet Ibis.” One specific example was at the beginning of the story where the author wrote “summer was dead, but autumn had not yet been born when the ibis came to the bleeding tree.


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