So Much Water so Close to Home

1493 Words Nov 9th, 2010 6 Pages
Jordan Williams
Sara Howe
English 101
17 September 2010
“So Much Water So Close To Home” In So Much Water So Close To Home, Raymond Carver explores the hardships that society brings upon us by using dialogue and character development to reveal that men and women alike have difficulty reconciling the differences in ethical and moral values. Carver is able to do this by relating to topics that demonstrate the character’s difference in morality. These include such things as death, gender stereotypes, and relationships. While discussing these topics, Carver reflects upon society’s social standard and compares that with the roles of the characters throughout the story. Raymond Carver, as an author, is known for his broad use of minimalism
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As the narrator, Claire creates an emotional and compassionate tone throughout the story. Her dialogue constantly consists of words such as “honey”, “mommy”, “love”, which constitutes to the overall mood of the text (Carver 363). Additionally, she is constantly catering to her husband and child by cooking, cleaning, and performing tasks of the typical “stay-at-home” mom. Her affectionate personality, want for control, and mother-like performance plays a role in Carver’s explanation of the stereotypical mother and wife. Both Stuart and Claire’s personality and characteristics serve as prime explanations to Carver’s view on marriage. With both characters fitting into the typical stereotypes of men and women, the author depicts the standard marriage that is present nowadays. With the constant arguing and disagreements between Claire and Stuart, Carver is suggesting that marriage is very complex and difficult. Because Carver explains that marriage is “something that [he] feels [he] knows about”, he defines his perspective of marriage as being an “indelible experience” (Kellerman). It is possible that Claire and Stuart’s relationship is a reflection of Carver’s past love life. In general, however, the author describes marriage as a difficult task but something worth fighting for. This is explained by the
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