Symbolism In The Scarlet Ibis

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“The Scarlet Ibis” by James Hurst is a realistic fiction about these two brothers, Doodle, and Doodle’s brother who was the narrator of the story, many symbols are used. A symbol is a materialistic object being put in place for an abstract or complex emotion, or idea. For example the emojis you use when texting are symbols you use to express how you are feeling. In this story, Doodle is being symbolized by the Scarlet Ibis, the Scarlet Ibis is a bird and a symbol for Doodle because of their many similarities. An example of the Scarlet Ibis symbolizing Doodle is when Hurst describes the physical health of Doodle and the Ibis. He describes Doodle as being very sick and weak at the beginning of the story by saying “He seemed all head, with a tiny body which was red and shriveled like an old man's. Everybody thought he was going to die-everybody except Aunt Nicey….” (Hurst page 1). Later on in the story when the Scarlet Ibis is introduced, Doodle’s father describes the bird as: “It looks tired, or maybe sick”(Hurst page 5). By giving Doodle and the Scarlet Ibis such similar physical features, it insinuates that whatever happens to the Scarlet Ibis will more than likely happen to Doodle. Another example of the Scarlet Ibis being a symbol for Doodle is when the Scarlet Ibis dies.” At that moment the bird began to flutter, but the wings were uncoordinated, and amid much flapping and a spray of flying feathers, it tumbled down, bumping through the limbs of the bleeding tree and
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