Analysis Of The Book ' Snowman '

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"I am not my childhood," Snowman says out loud. Okay… Well, who is he? Snowman (or Jimmy, as I will refer to him) is a perplexing character from Atwood’s first introduction. He is living as the only human man among a colony of “Crakers” over whom he appears to be some kind of godly leader. As he wallows in his past we discover him to be almost tragic; a cruel and manipulative lover, void of any real emotionally intimate relationships, who now spends all of his time thinking, reflecting and obsessing over his past. For a man who “is not his childhood”- we sure hear a lot about it! Which tells us that his past is critical in understanding who he is as a character. Jimmy never achieves the closeness he craves with his mother; he spends most…show more content…
A mother who is predominantly absent, either physically or emotionally often leaves the child with difficulties understanding and experiencing intimacy. Both of these are models of insecure attachment. Let 's look at Jimmy and his relationship with his mother. Jimmy remembers his mother as predominantly distant and cold. This is depicted in Jimmy’s memory of his mother’s response when asked why she had resigned from her job: “because I wanted to stay home with you,” she said, looking over the top of Jimmy’s head and puffing on her cigarette.” As readers, we are invited to assume that she suffers from some kind of episodic depression- though this cannot be understood by Jimmy as a child. He recalls her forgetting his birthday, and when reminded, buying him gifts that showed she either knew or cared very little about her son. According to attachment theory- jimmy’s memories of his maternal parenting may be either idealised or devalued. In snowman’s reflections, he makes no excuses for the unstable home his mother creates. He reflects upon her unaffectionately and bluntly- and recants his only warm maternal memories of a hired nanny who was as affectionate and generous as his mother was cold and unpredictable. When his mother leaves work to care for him Jimmy is told the nanny must leave because; “nobody needed two mummies did they? oh yes, they did, thinks snowman. Oh yes, they really did.” Of course, Jimmy’s mother ultimately leaves him and
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