The Conservationist Themes

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Rebirth and Mortality

The fire that sweeps Mehring's farm symbolizes death, and the quick new growth symbolizes rebirth. The riverbank vegetation looks dead, but it obviously isn't. Appearances can be deceiving. Not only does the plant life come back, but also it is more revitalized than ever before. It is known that some species of plants need fire to start their life cycle. There are even new types of blooms that Mehring has never seen before. The reeds that he loves so much covered up blooms that he never has the opportunity to see, until the reeds are destroyed by fire. What appears to some as merely destruction and waste is rebirth.

The idea of rebirth ties into Mehring's worries about his own mortality. He wants his son to continue in his footsteps, but he knows it will never happen. At first, it is merely a fear in the...

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This section contains 1,161 words
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Buy The Conservationist Study Guide
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