The Gravity of Birds Themes & Motifs

This Study Guide consists of approximately 45 pages of chapter summaries, quotes, character analysis, themes, and more - everything you need to sharpen your knowledge of The Gravity of Birds.
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Birds and Flight

Birds are a running motif throughout the narrative and appear in various forms. Some are ironic, such as the character Finch being named after a bird and being afraid to fly in an airplane. Some are literal, such as a the figurine of the blue grosbeak which Thomas steals from his mother, and which Alice then steals from him. Some are symbolic, such as Thomas's inclusion of the bird as a hidden part of all of his paintings done after 1972, once Alice and his daughter go missing.

In almost all instances, birds represent some sense of loss. Finch is afraid to fly because of the death of his wife in an airport; Thomas steals the blue grosbeak to make his mother feel a sense of loss since it is an item that she treasures more than her relationship with him; Alice feels a loss...

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This section contains 2,318 words
(approx. 6 pages at 400 words per page)
Buy The Gravity of Birds Study Guide
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