The Dollmaker Setting & Symbolism

This Study Guide consists of approximately 74 pages of chapter summaries, quotes, character analysis, themes, and more - everything you need to sharpen your knowledge of The Dollmaker.
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Gertie's Knife

Gertie's knife is a symbol of life force. It brings Amos back to life and throughout the novel anchors Gertie in times of fear or doubt or uncertainty. She frequently reaches into her pocket and touches it for comfort. It is a touchstone to her soul. Its purity of purpose is slowly corrupted by Gertie's increasing use of it on what might be called "commercial" carving, a process brought to a jarring and complete conclusion when Clovis apparently uses it to commit murder.

The Cherry Wood Block

The cherry wood block is a symbol not just of Gertie's life force, but also of her dreams and her determination to bring them to life. It is another so-called touchstone to her soul. In the same way as she turns to the knife in times of trouble, she also turns to the cherry wood block, finding particular comfort...

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This section contains 841 words
(approx. 3 pages at 400 words per page)
Buy The Dollmaker Study Guide
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