the-lamp-at-noon-analysis - The Lamp at Noon by Sinclair Ross Setting The setting of The Lamp at Noon by Sinclair Ross is on a farm in the prairies

the-lamp-at-noon-analysis - The Lamp at Noon by...

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Unformatted text preview: “The Lamp at Noon” by Sinclair Ross Setting: The setting of “The Lamp at Noon” by Sinclair Ross is on a farm in the prairies during a huge dust storm during the 1930’s -Great Depression. The atmosphere is depressing because the family is going through a very tough time. The dust blocks out the sunlight causing the lamp to be lit at noon. Characters: The main characters are Ellen, Paul and their unnamed baby. Ellen and Paul are the protagonists. Ellen is a determined, hardworking mother but is distressed because she is trying to keep their baby alive and prevent the dust from suffocating him. She is a static character throughout the story. Paul is a dynamic character that changes throughout the story. He is brave, determined, proud and selfish. He is too proud to give up on his dream. Conflict: 1. Person vs Person: Ellen vs Paul 2. Person vs Themselves: Ellen vs her own sanity Ellen feels isolated and secluded from the rest of the world. 3. Person vs Nature: Paul, Ellen and their baby vs The dust storm Plot: Exposition/Introduction- The story takes place on a farm during a dust storm. Initial Incident/Conflict- Ellen is at home with their baby waiting for her husband Paul to come home. She is in great distress feeling isolated, trapped, and afraid of suffocating from the dust. Rising Action-Paul and Ellen argue. Ellen wants to leave the farm. Paul does not want to give up on his dream and feels that times will get better. Climax- Paul leaves the house very angry and goes to the stable. He realizes that he does not have enough food to feed his horses let alone his wife and son. He starts to think that maybe Ellen is right and they should leave the farm. Falling Action- Paul returns to the house to find that Ellen and the baby are gone. He searches for them finds them stooped against a heap of dirt. Conclusion- Ellen is driven insane from the isolation and the baby dies suffocating from the dust. Theme: 1. Prairie literature themes(handout) 2. Isolation- “desert you fool the lamp lit at noon” Ellen is desperate to find a better life for them. She compares their home to that of a desert sandstorm: the dust blowing and the lamp lit at noon isolates them from the sun and the distance they live from neighboring families. 3. Maturity- Both Paul and Ellen realize in the conclusion, as the storm begins to clear, that they need to set their own desires aside at times for the sake of their family. 4. One of the motifs (a recurring theme throughout the story) in this short story is the dust. Point of View: 3rd person omniscient- all knowing (what characters say, think and do) “she wanted to go to him, to feel his arms supporting her, to cry a little…” Literary Elements: Symbolism Sinclair Ross uses the dust to symbolize how suffocated Ellen feels in the house all day. Another symbol is the lamp. The lamp being “on at noon” represents just how bad the storm really is because they need this light source in order to see through the dust. The horses in the barn symbolize comfort to Paul. Paul is a very stereotypical masculine character, but during the dust storm, we find him in the barn with his horse “Bess”, showing emotions that he would not show around anyone else. Paul uses the barn as a “refuge” from the storm; not only the storm outside, but the storm he faces in his house with his wife, Ellen. The repetition of the word “desert” is also an important symbol in the story. “Desert” represents how Ellen feels deserted in her marriage. She feels that as long as they stay on the farm, isolated from all civilization, their marriage will remain at a dead end. The wind in the storm symbolizes the destruction of the land. Also, the two winds that are chasing and fighting against each other may also represent Ellen and Paul’s relationship, as Ellen wants to move but Paul feels it’s best if they stay. Ellen’s wants to leave the house and give up on Paul’s dreams. She says on p. ___ “I’m afraid, Paul. I can’t stand it any longer. He cries all the time. You will go, Paul – say you will. We aren’t living here – not really living.” Afterwards, Paul retaliates with the phrase: “I told you this morning, Ellen; we keep on right where we are. At least I do. It’s yourself you’re thinking about, not the baby.” Foreshadowing: The former quote foreshadows the ending of the story, when we find out that Ellen is insane and has always been. In the end we learn that Ellen runs away, and Paul is quickly awakened from his daydream and soon realizes that his baby is dead and his wife’s state of mind is much worse than he realized. Foreshadowing “See Paul I stand like this all day…if only I could run” Simile “The sun raced like a wizened orange” Metaphor “He was naked”- he lost everything including his wife and child Personification “The first wind sprang inside the room” Imagery Used throughout the story-sight, sound, touch taste and smell ...
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