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Dorothy Allison Writing Styles in Bastard Out of Carolina

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Style

Symbolism

Bone's birth certificate is the primary symbol of the novel. Stamped with the word illegitimate, it decries the circumstances of Bone's birth. Symbolically, as long as the birth certificate takes that form, Bone is unable to escape her past history and her social illegitimacy. At the end of the novel, however, Bone must start her life over. Though this choice is forced upon her by Anney's desertion and by her own realization that "the child I had been was gone with the child she [Anney] had been," it still is a time of rebirth, a transformation physically signified by the birth certificate that Anney has somehow managed to obtain for her - one that lacks that accusatory and demeaning word.

The novel abounds with other symbols. The physical hunger that Bone feels when her family does not have enough to eat is a physical reflection of her spiritual...

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This section contains 971 words
(approx. 4 pages at 300 words per page)
Purchase our Bastard Out of Carolina Study Guide
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Bastard Out of Carolina from BookRags and Gale's For Students Series. ©2005-2006 Thomson Gale, a part of the Thomson Corporation. All rights reserved.
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