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 POST: Short Story: "Through the Tunnel" (373)

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PostSubject: POST: Short Story: "Through the Tunnel" (373)   Mon Sep 11, 2006 11:57 am

Doris Lessing is one of our great British writers. In this early story of hers, we meet a young boy and his mother.

In your opinion, what does the "tunnel" represent? By answering this question, you are showing me your understanding of symbolism. drunken


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K. Hoffer 3



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PostSubject: Re: POST: Short Story: "Through the Tunnel" (373)   Mon Sep 11, 2006 4:58 pm

In my opinion, the tunnel represents the ultimate challenge or goal for Jerry. Jerry's goal is to conquer the tunnel and by finally swimming through the tunnel, Jerry feels a sense of accomplishment and pride. I think the tunnel represents the challenges and goals that everybody has in life, and that everybody must overcome.
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misscassidym3

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PostSubject: through the tunnel   Mon Sep 11, 2006 8:48 pm

I think that the tunnel represents everything Jerry wants to conquer. It is his ultimate goal in the story. Early on in the story, his mom talks about how he is growing older, and I think part of the tunnel determination is proving that he's not such a child any more. I also think he feels he will be accepted if he reaches the end of the tunnel, as he wants to gain the approval of the older, native boys. When he does accomplish his goals, however, he realizes that he doesn't want their approval any more. I think this was a well written story and I enjoyed reading it.

study
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nicole3

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PostSubject: Re: POST: Short Story: "Through the Tunnel" (373)   Tue Sep 12, 2006 4:34 pm

In this story, the tunnel represents the goals that Jerry wants to achieve. By going through the tunnel, Jerry is not only able to feel a sense of accomplishment, but proves to himself that he is not a young child anymore. At the end of the story Jerry's impression of the old beach changes. He realizes that the beach is too babyish for him. Jerry feels that it is time for him to grow up, and by going through the tunnel, he is able to accomplish this goal. Very Happy
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alyang



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PostSubject: Re: POST: Short Story: "Through the Tunnel" (373)   Tue Sep 12, 2006 8:41 pm

to me, the tunnel represented life and how you have to never give up in life if you want to achieve something. Jerry never gave up when he was in the tunnel and he achieved his goal. If you want to have a good life, you should never give up.
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CCMoua3



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PostSubject: Re: POST: Short Story: "Through the Tunnel" (373)   Tue Sep 12, 2006 8:58 pm

I think the tunnel may have symbolized the hardships Jerry was trying to overcome. Those hardships weren't physical things, but rather characteristics about Jerry that caused him shame.
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Dno222

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PostSubject: Re: POST: Short Story: "Through the Tunnel" (373)   Tue Sep 12, 2006 9:01 pm

The story shows that challenges have risks that vary based on the challenge. In Jerry's case his goal/challenge was to swim through the tunnel like all the other guy's did. He prepared for his challenge by testing how long he could hold his breath. When the day of the challenge came he first tested his breath again, with bad results. He came up with a bleeding nose and very dizzy. He doubted his sucess, but then threw fate into the wind and dived down. Jerry swam through and barely made it, but was satisfied with his victory. Challenges/Goals come with risks of failure, that might have deadly consquences. Thats the way life works. cheers afro cheers
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Dylan M Per. 3

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PostSubject: Re: POST: Short Story: "Through the Tunnel" (373)   Tue Sep 12, 2006 9:28 pm

The tunnel, in my opinion, represents the goal he set for himself. It represents how he wanted to get through the tunnel and make it to the other side and accomplish what the bigger kids did. I really enjoyed this story, even though it started out confusing in the beginning.
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SamC3

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PostSubject: My Insight   Tue Sep 12, 2006 10:49 pm

Going through the tunnel is very symbolic because it shows a journey and the setbacks that are along the way. In everyone’s lives we will have many experiences were we will have to go through a tunnel to get where we want to be.
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ananya_j



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PostSubject: Re: POST: Short Story: "Through the Tunnel" (373)   Tue Sep 12, 2006 11:29 pm

in my words i thought through the tunnel had a moral at the ending. the moral was never to give up achieving your goal. I thought this story was great and had a amazing ending to it.
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PostSubject: Re: POST: Short Story: "Through the Tunnel" (373)   Wed Sep 13, 2006 1:30 am

In this story, the narrator leads the reader to the theme by letting the reader know what the characters think. The reader is shown why the boy is so emotionally attached to his mother and, at the beginning, unwilling to inquire of her for permission to go to his beach and, later in the story, unwilling to inform her of his passage through the tunnel. This can also explain why the mother let him go without any inquiries, even if she was very concerned about him. Furthermore, when the narrator describes the native boys, the reader can see that although the boys might be only a little older than Jerry, he considers them as men and he endeavors to do everything to become like one of them, even if it necessary to go through the long and dangerous underwater tunnel.

Through the thoughts of the mother, I realized that the boy is at a point in his life when he is ready to become more independent in his life. Moreover, I saw that the mother believed that it is wrong to keep him close to her for too long. In addition, Jerry perceives swimming through the underwater tunnel as something the other boys must accomplish, and that specific action can be seen as "the rite of passage" in this story.

Through the thoughts of the characters, the narrator is capable of showing the theme to the reader, which is that a “rite of passage”, swimming through the tunnel, is an endeavor that must be undergone by oneself with no outside influence. The theme of the story can also be interpreted as the idea that as one becomes older, one eventually needs to become more independant and deatched from their family. Jerry's mother's decision to "let him go" symbolizes a detachment or separation from the family that must occur one day in everyone's life.
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PostSubject: Re: POST: Short Story: "Through the Tunnel" (373)   Wed Sep 13, 2006 5:34 pm

I think the hidden water tunnel represents growing up. You watch as others grow (or go through the tunnel) and it seems hard, scary. But as you keep watching and everyone else enjoys it, you suddenly want to try. You prepare yourself for it and eventually get up the courage to go for it. You try it and survive but decide you like being a kid. Rolling Eyes
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PostSubject: Re: POST: Short Story: "Through the Tunnel" (373)   Wed Sep 13, 2006 5:53 pm

I think that the tunnel represents the coming into manhood. Jerry, the boy, was always with his mother, however, when he asked to go off somewhere else he discovered the tunnel. He spent a long time trying to himself ready to get through that tunnel, because he matured along that time. Instead of trying to do it without being ready, he spent time to make sure he'd get through it.
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LanHuang

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PostSubject: Re: POST: Short Story: "Through the Tunnel" (373)   Wed Sep 13, 2006 6:28 pm

The tunnel is symbolic of a challenge. Something that needs to be evaluated to see the risk vs. reward, the main character must take this risk to get his reward and to get more confidence in him. The tunnel is a very strong symbol
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Kaaaaren6

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PostSubject: Re: POST: Short Story: "Through the Tunnel" (373)   Wed Sep 13, 2006 7:11 pm

I think the tunnel represents a goal or problem Jerry wants to overcome. As he learns to hold his breath to prepare for swimming through the tunnel, he is teaching himself to overcome this problem. When he finally swims through, it means he accomplished his goal by completing the task he set for himself.
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PostSubject: Re: POST: Short Story: "Through the Tunnel" (373)   Wed Sep 13, 2006 7:14 pm

CassieS2 wrote:
I think the hidden water tunnel represents growing up. You watch as others grow (or go through the tunnel) and it seems hard, scary. But as you keep watching and everyone else enjoys it, you suddenly want to try. You prepare yourself for it and eventually get up the courage to go for it. You try it and survive but decide you like being a kid. Rolling Eyes
That isn't something I'd expect but that can be another moral, thats very deep thinking Cassie. Good job. cheers cheers afro cheers cheers
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PostSubject: Through the tunnel   Wed Sep 13, 2006 7:59 pm

I think the tunnel represents a leap into adult hood. To get through the tunnel it took lots of hard work and dedication, children seem to lack both of these qualities. I think that the boy's mom sensed the boy was growing up because she let him go there alone and never asked what he was doing. I think this also demostrates a jump into adulthood because it was most likely one of the first times jerry's instincts came into role and he was forced to do anything to survive for life. Jerry never gave up which is what many adults would have done.
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PostSubject: "Through the Tunnel"   Wed Sep 13, 2006 8:31 pm

In my opinion, I thought the tunnel symbolized achieving one's goals, as well as stepping up into becoming an adult. When Jerry decides to wander off and swim in the bay, that's when his first step towards adulthood is made. Then as Jerry discovers the mysteries that lay in the bay, he takes another step into adulthood. When he finds the tunnel on the bottom of the sea floor, he is hesitant at first... He was afraid to take a risk. When he comes the next day, he debates if he should attempt to see where the tunnel would take him. He practices and prepares, and finally goes through the mysterious tunnel.
I think the tunnel symbolizes Jerry's transition into becoming an adult. Through the tunnel, he faces obstacles and challenges, and the sense of not knowing what will happen next. The same thing happens to teens as we try to become adults... We realize our "tunnel" is dark, sometimes may be a little scary, and no matter what we can never really see what is coming next.
I was so glad Jerry decided to take a risk and go through the tunnel. He proved that he could overcome his obstacles. It was a difficult challenge for him, but he succeeded. I really enjoyed this story.
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PostSubject: the tunnel   Wed Sep 13, 2006 9:14 pm

I think that the tunnel represents Jerry's journey into maturity and possibly manhood. He is growing from being sort of a mama's boy who caters to his mom because he doesn't want to hurt her, to a determined, courageous individual. I think that he never even thought about taking that big step in maturity until he saw the native boys accomplish the task. To him, he would rather die trying to prove his bravery and masculinity than not try at all. I love you
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PostSubject: Re: POST: Short Story: "Through the Tunnel" (373)   Wed Sep 13, 2006 9:17 pm

To me, the tunnel means the goal that Jerry set. It meant to tell us that no matter how hard things are, if you set a goal and put your mind into it, you can do it. So when Jerry wanted to go through the tunnel, he really mean it and put his mind into it that he wanted to accomplish the challenge. So in the end, he accomplished his goal beacuse he didn't give up.
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PostSubject: Re: POST: Short Story: "Through the Tunnel" (373)   Wed Sep 13, 2006 9:31 pm

That was a great story. I like the idea that he kept the fact that he was trying to overcome a tough feat to himself, and gave no clue to his mother. I agree that the tunnel represents the things that he is afraid of, and the things he needs to overcome. Also, he wants to feel included with the native boys, even if he really isn't, he wants to feel a part of them. Lastly, i like how the author described the boy under the water, i have held my own in many underwater breath holding games and i know what he was describing. pale
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PostSubject: Re: POST: Short Story: "Through the Tunnel" (373)   Wed Sep 13, 2006 9:35 pm

LanHuang wrote:
The tunnel is symbolic of a challenge. Something that needs to be evaluated to see the risk vs. reward, the main character must take this risk to get his reward and to get more confidence in him.

I completely agree with this. The tunnel was a challenge that Jerry chose to face, and he struggled and took major risks in order to accomplish it.
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PostSubject: Re: POST: Short Story: "Through the Tunnel" (373)   Wed Sep 13, 2006 10:43 pm

This kid was crazy! I cant believe someone would work so hard to get through a little tunnel. He risked his life!
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PostSubject: Re: POST: Short Story: "Through the Tunnel" (373)   Wed Sep 13, 2006 11:21 pm

Going through the tunnel seemed like a self invented initiation rite or coming of age. He saw the French boys as men to him. He wanted to prove himself capable and to be recognized as one of the "men".

Now I'm heading off on a tangent, but I saw an initiation rite on the Travel Channel that involved sticking your hands into gloves full of fire ants for ten minutes multiple times. Ow.
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PostSubject: Re: POST: Short Story: "Through the Tunnel" (373)   Thu Sep 14, 2006 5:31 pm

I think the tunnel represents risks in life and you have to weigh the consequnces of what you are about to do. In the story Jerry swam through the tunnel with the risk of dying but in the end he accomplished what he wanted to do.
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