In his classic short story, "Flight," John Steinbeck uses many examples of symbolism to foreshadow the conclusion. Symbolism can be anything, a person, place or thing, used to portray something beyond itself. It is used to represent or foreshadow the ending of the story. Steinbeck uses colors, direction, and nature symbolism to help presage Pepé's tragic death. Let us now more closely examine the ways that Steinbeck uses colors to foreshadow the ending of his short story. Perhaps the most repeatedly used symbol in "Flight," is the color black. In literature many authors use black to represent death. There are numerous examples in this short story. Some of these include the black handle on the long blade, Pepé's black hair and the black jerky. Another example may be found when Pepé puts on his fathers black coat, which represents death. When Pepé puts on the coat he is literally covering himself with death. Another fine example is the trail in which Pepé travels. Steinbeck describes the path as a well-worn black path. By traveling on this path he is in fact taking the road of death. Furthermore Pepé's appearance also helps foreshadow the ending. Steinbeck describes him as having a black hat that covers his black thatched
" Some of these examples include colors, direction, and nature. Pepe is also described as being dark, lean and tall. Nature symbolism includes a variety of things. Even though the directions North and East are "good," the fact that the shadow is there turns them "bad. Direction is used frequently in the story to symbolize the direction that Pepe is heading; if he is heading towards good or evil. The color black, which is the universal symbol of death, is used to help foreshadow Pepe's inevitable death. Steinbeck further uses this symbolism while describing the tops of the trees on the mountain. " This means that evil is winning over goodness. Besides compass directions, height is also a very popular way of foreshadowing the conclusion of the story. Pepe looks at his "weathered little shack" and notices the shadow. As we can readily see, the authors use of black symbolism in the story tells us that the main character, Pepe, is impending death. This symbolizes that the further Pepe travels up the mountain the closer he is to his inevitable death. As shown above, direction is another very important aspect of symbolism.
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