Blood by Janice Galloway Essay Example
Blood by Janice Galloway Essay Example

Blood by Janice Galloway Essay Example

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  • Pages: 4 (1047 words)
  • Published: September 17, 2017
  • Type: Essay
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Isolation is a major theme that is explored in many novels and short stories. "Blood" by Janice Galloway cleverly emphasises a single girls isolation through a number of techniques such as characterisation, structure, imagery and setting. Through out the story we have a real insight to the girls deepest feelings and thoughts.Immediately the reader is drawn the title of the short story "Blood", this word carries with it a number of negative connotations and a number of positive ones. When we look to the associations of blood we think of pain, violence and periods.

Periods are often look upon as being disgusting and makes women seem impure. Nevertheless there is a number of positive connotations to the title, when we think of blood we are immediately drawn to the colour of red symbolising love and pa


ssion and also the idea of life and death. Unfortunately the negatives out weigh the positives. The title helps aid the idea of isolation due to the fact that women are being isolated in society, and being stereotyped as they are often seen as impure.

Characterisation is used by the writer to employ the theme of isolation and to help reveal what the girls thoughts and feelings are. At the beginning of the story the girl is getting a tooth taken out at the dentist. Janice Galloway depicts the dentists as being brutal towards the girl:"he put his knee on her chest",This is rather strange as it is very unusually for a dentist to use such rough treatment. The dentist is portrayed as being very unprofessional and rather sleazy, he comments on the girls red hair, stereotyping her:"Redheads always bleed worse

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than other folk.

"The dentist makes the girl feel uncomfortable and singles her out because of her hair colour, he therefore is isolating her.In addition to this use of characterisation the writer limits information about the girl. We unsure of her name and her background, the fact we don't even know the girls name adds to this theme of isolation. The only impression we get of the girls background is negative, the fact her mother or father haven't accompanied her along to the dentist and left her to go alone implies she is also isolated at home:" ..

. there was no point in going home either because things would have to be explained in triplicate when mother got in and she never believed you anyway."This confirms the fact that she doesn't have a very close relationship with her mother, and additionally adds to the theme of isolation.Through out the short story Janice Galloway employs one of her most significant techniques through structure to emphasis the girls isolation. The prose contains a number of examples of speech, however there is an absence of inverted commas. The girl is therefore internalising all of her thoughts and not sharing them with the rest of the world.

"Little rascal, he said"Even when the dentist talks to her he gets no reply, she is isolating herself from even small conversation and furthermore the rest of society.Galloway describes a rather simple setting, but more importantly the girls avoidance her surroundings to further the theme of isolation in the short story "Blood". The story begins with the girl on a visit to the dentist, followed by a walk back to school and ending up

in a music room. These are all everyday places and places the girl would want to fell comfortable and happy in, especially whilst at school. Whilst at the dentists the girl is given a sanitary towel to cover her mouth to stop the bleeding, and clearly was embarrassed by the situation, this idea of periods and impurity is referred to at this point in the story. The girl having to return to school is obviously going to make her feel awkward, really rather vulnerable and more open to bullying.

She will want to just blend in and become invisible:"... all the way across the playground again and the faces looking out knowing where you were going because it was the only time senior girls went there"Clearly the girl is feeling isolated and doesn't want to have to go through the shame of walking across the playground, with everyone knowing she is going for a sanitary towel.In addition to her isolation at school, she careful picks her route to walk back from the dentist. This involves avoiding the building site where the men would all shout things at her and make her feel uncomfortable:"The best way from the surgery was past the flats with bay windows and gardens.

Better than up by the building site, full of those shouting men. One of them always shouted things, whistled loud enough to make the whole street turn and look. Bad enough at the best of time. Today would have been awful."Undoubtedly the girl choice this route to steer clear of the builders and there calls, she did this as she did not want a lot of attention, and

obviously didn't like attention of any kind.

By choosing to choice this way back to school she is furthermore isolating herself from society.Janice Galloway frequently uses imagery in the story to show how the girl perceives herself to the rest of the world. The girl repeatedly compares her body to a number of unpleasant things, the girl describes her tooth to a deformed parsnip:"like a deformed parsnip"This tooth was inside her, and was part of her body her negativity refers back to her own body and her own person. The girl also compares the sound of the tooth being pulled out to the uprooting of potatoes, which obviously has a great deal of negative connotations, as I personally would dislike it if someone described part of me to a ground vegetable:"the gum parting with a sound like uprooting potatoes"Unfortunately as we can see the girl has a very low perception of herself, this may be the reason why she is seen to be isolating herself.Galloway clearly shows that the girl is extremely isolated from her peers, her parents and her social surroundings. It seems that she is total lost and alone, totally detached from her life.

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