Writing Techniques in The Spire

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Golding's most distinctive technique in this novel is linking symbols to develop his themes. Throughout the novel the spire represents the idealism or vision that enables man to do what seemingly cannot be done. The spire stands despite inadequate foundations and lifts men's hearts and minds. But opposing the spire is what Golding terms the cellarage, a pit dug at the center of the nave. It represents the evil that was also necessary to build the spire — the murders and exploitation. The apple tree, with its associations with the Fall, is an apt symbol for the nature of man.

Linking these three symbols, particularly at Jocelin's moment of selfawareness, Golding reiterates the theme of the simultaneous existence of opposites in man. When Jocelin on his deathbed sees the spire through his window, he says, "It's like the apple tree!" "It" can be both man and the spire...

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This section contains 167 words
(approx. 1 page at 300 words per page)
Buy The Spire Short Guide
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The Spire from Gale. ©2005-2006 Thomson Gale, a part of the Thomson Corporation. All rights reserved.
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