A Silver Dish Essay

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Kelly is an instructor of literature and creative writing at College of Lake County and Oakton Community College in Des Plaines, Illinois. In this essay, Kelly examines Bellow's use of symbolism.

In a 1959 essay published in the New York Times called "The Search for Symbols, a Writer Warns, Misses All the Fun and Facts of the Story," Saul Bellow takes literary critics to task for reading too deeply, asserting that close scrutiny can in fact be a threat to fiction. He presents a hypothetical situation: a professor, asked why, in The Iliad, Achilles drags the body of Hector around the perimeter of Troy, answers that it is because doing so fits a pattern of circles, from shields to chariot wheels, that run throughout the story. To support his thesis the imaginary professor points to the fact that Plato, who was himself an ancient Greek but had no other...

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This section contains 1,528 words
(approx. 4 pages at 400 words per page)
Buy the A Silver Dish Study Guide
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A Silver Dish from Short Stories for Students. ©2005-2006 Thomson Gale, a part of the Thomson Corporation. All rights reserved.