Whispers Through a Megaphone Themes & Motifs

Rachel Elliott
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Trauma and Abuse

Miriam’s story arc is heavily defined by the trauma caused by her mother’s habits of abuse. The narrative provides explicit examples of this abuse so as to emphasize its deleterious effects on Miriam’s emotional and mental state. Throughout Miriam’s childhood, she was alternately terrorized and ignored by her mother, which contributed to Miriam’s adult neuroses and psychoses. For example, when Miriam’s mother engaged in an affair with the headmaster, she showed no regard for Miriam. Miriam’s mother and the headmaster often walked around the house naked and ignored Miriam. Miriam’s mother also engaged in more extreme and direct forms of abuse, such as when Miriam’s mother threatened physical violence if Miriam ever spoke above a whisper: “If you speak, if you speak normally, you’ll get hit with a cricket bat” (156). These forms of abuse...

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This section contains 2,266 words
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Buy the Whispers Through a Megaphone Study Guide
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