The Japanese Quince Essay

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Lanier is an educator at Georgia Southern University. In the following essay, she discusses the blackbird of Galsworthy's story as a symbol of "the call to spontaneity," a concept that is difficult for Mr. Nilson to accept.

According to Laurence Perrine and Thomas Arp, the blackbird in John Galsworthy's "The Japanese Quince" is not symbolically significant: it is "simply" a "part of the tree symbol," the "song at the tree's heart, the expression of lyric ecstasy." Galsworthy' they say, "has chosen a blackbird simply because the English blackbird. . . is a rich singer and would be found in London in the spring."

In the June 1971 issue of Research Studies, Roger Ramsey presents "another way of looking at [the] blackbird" in "The Japanese Quince." Ramsey relates the blackbird to the "empty feeling in Mr. Nilson's heart," saying its call is a "call to the darker places of the heart for...

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This section contains 2,045 words
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Buy The Japanese Quince Study Guide
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The Japanese Quince from Short Stories for Students. ©2005-2006 Thomson Gale, a part of the Thomson Corporation. All rights reserved.