Summary Of Balzac And The Little Chinese Seamstress

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In Dai Sijie’s 2001 novel, Balzac and the Little Chinese Seamstress, the narrator is constantly evolving, and adapting to his new life. The passage being looked at here details one of his final ‘major’ changes. The narrator, Luo, and the tailor have teamed up in effort to help the Headman with a bad tooth that has been bothering him. Throughout this passage, as previously mentioned, the narrator undergoes a change. What makes it notable, however, is that it’s not necessarily a change that he’s very fond of. Regardless, he does little—nothing, actually—to stop it. From the very first words of the chapter, the narrator provides a strong glimpse into how he interprets this situation—he’s ridden with intrigue, and disgust. From the start,…show more content…
Along with him describing the ‘bad tooth’ “as porous as a coral reef.” this wet, dark diction adds to the whole disgust factor, and is responsible for the assumption regarding the narrator’s infatuation with all this. Because again, he wouldn’t be going into this much detail if he was not interested in it. Finally, it’s sort of hard not to address the act of tying the Headman down. The narrator is very surprised by this, and the reader should be too. This is an honorable man, a “tyrant” as it were, allowing himself to be strapped down by his inferiors. If this what put in for any reason, surely it was to speak to the severity of the situation, and in regard to what the narrator ultimately does to him. At this point, he is feeling anxious about what is to come (yet fully invested in what is happening), all the while he feels disgusted because honestly, this is all pretty gross. This is where the actual transformation takes place; the narrator starts to feel revengeful now that he is helping with the procedure. These irrational thoughts ultimately lead to his outburst of anger. This all sort of stems from an analogy made relating pumping the treadle to pedaling a bike. He talks about a cyclist riding up and down various terrain in order to describe how he is ‘pedaling’ himself. This alone lets us know something kind of disturbing… he enjoys doing this. Being that he has lived in desolation
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