Dark Brown Dog

786 Words4 Pages
Kamal Namou
Comp. Lit. 121
Response Paper

The short story of A Dark Brown Dog by Stephen Crane has meaning even before the story begins, its creative title brings to mind a dark brown dog who represents a man just being freed from the chains of slavery. The author, Shane Crane, uses his own experiences of owning a dog as a young boy and how the dog reacted to that. This makes symbolism the main literary element used throughout this story. Being written in 1890 the story is a response to the reconstruction era in the Untied States shortly after the time period of slavery was abolished known as Jim Crow. This was a time here in the United States after the civil war when slaves had been emancipated, and equality was supposedly
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However the dog rolls onto his back and puts his paws up almost to pray for mercy and the boy begins to get excited as the dog has now accepted him as his master. This becomes apparent when the boy starts to leave for home and the dog follows, and the boy continues to beat the dog but the poor thing doesn’t no any better and begins to accept it as a normal action. It is obvious the dog doesn’t know how to fight back and the boy is more determined to get what he wants distinguishing the difference between blacks and whites. The family of the boy then starts to fight over whether to keep the dog or not between the father and mother. The father decides to keep the dog representing the south and Jim Crow laws, while the wife represents the north. It is clear the father wins out since we never hear from the wife again. Then a bond starts to slowly form between the dog and boy, as master and servant often did. The boy even ends up protecting the dog from being beaten by the father even though he still abuses the dog himself, the dog is faithful to the child though and accepts his beatings. When the father denies giving food to the dog the child attempts to get some food for him showing that the hatred for black is taught not innate. The two begin going on walks with each other and expressing new ideas, which relates to how ending slavery has opened doors for change. However whenever the dog
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