Love and Hate: An Analytical Essay on the Three Short Stories


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Love and hate are usually separated by a thin line. James Joyce’s Araby elaborated more about a boy who was obsessed with a girl named Mangan sister. It could have been obsession or love at the same time because whatever the boy was feeling was deep and he could do anything for the girl. Christine by Stephen kings also helps in the elaboration of the issue of love whereby Arnie falls in love with a car at first sight. The car was named Christine and possessing the car hanged his character. The woods by Harlan Coben elaborates more about love when Paul Copeland is facing various instances of losing his wife, mother, and father and new evidence show one of the people who went camping with his sister was still alive. That brought worries on whether her sister was still alive and he hoped that all will be well with time. The main aim of the analysis is to elaborate the mood created in the short stories, the internal conflict of the protagonist and the ideas surrounding the protagonist in the stories.

According to James Joyce Araby, the protagonist is more emphasized in the story because the sty elaborates more about his love life and the obsession he had with the girl (Joyce). Mangan sister was the girl which the protagonist was having a crush with and with the various episodes shown in the short story, the writer of the story helps the reader in empathizing with the protagonist. This is because, due to the crush which the protagonist had, he was able to promise the girl a gift and unluckily, he went to the bazaar late only to find that it was almost closing and that made him be sad. The sadness was brought by the fact that he was not able to get a gift for the girl (Joyce). This brings emotions to the readers of the short story and that proves that Joyce wanted the readers to empathize with the protagonist. The internal conflicts of the protagonist involved a fight with his own consciousness to hold on feelings for Mangan’s sister and a fight within him in terms of emotions after he missed the gift from the bazaar to give Mangan sister.

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There are a lot of emotions created in the story originating from emotions of love towards Mangan’s sister. The emotions were strong and that made the protagonist promise of something which he knew he was not in a position to acquire easily without the help of his uncle (Joyce). Emotions can also be shown after the protagonist missed the bazaar and that made him cry out loud because he was not able to get the gift for the girl. 

Christine by Stephen kings elaborates more on the love for a car named Christine. The protagonist falls in love with a car named Christine. The car was able to change the character of the protagonist during the repairing process of the vehicle and that was worrying his friends (King). The writer of the story wants the readers to empathize with the protagonist because he dwells of the description of the way the car changed his characters and the way he was jealous of the car which had killed most of his enemies through accidents. This shows that ownership can be turned into possession as shown by the protagonist who loved the car to the extent of allowing it to change his own characters to be more paranoid. The internal conflict running in the mind of the protagonist is fear of losing the car and extreme desire of putting the car back into its good shape. He was also jealous and extremely selfish of the car and that made him overprotect the car due to the fear of losing it (King).

Emotions in Christine by Stephen kings are most and that makes Arnie change his character because of the emotional change created by owning the car which he fell in love with immediately after seeing it (King). The emotions played a part in shaping the love he had for the car and also in the way he dedicated more time towards the restoration of the car than towards his only friend Dennis Guilder.  Leigh, his girlfriend, and Dennis who was his best friends come to realize that the other owner of the car was more possessive to Christine and it destroyed him. They are more committed to destroying Christine before the car destroys Arnie completely. On the other hand, Christine and Arnie are more determined of destroying Leigh and Dennis before they destroy them (King). This shows that there was an emotional battle existing in the short story and that helped in shaping up the short story. Love was the source of the emotional battle because they were fighting to bring their friend back to reality before the car got the better of him.

The woods by Harlan Coben shows the writer wanted the readers to be more empathetic with the protagonist. This is because the story helps in bringing up issues faced by the protagonist in the story in terms of personal problems regarding family love. For instance, Paul Copeland was mourning the death of her sister and he was faced with the stress of raising his daughter as a single father because his wife had died of cancer (Coben). The protagonist was also faced with the problem of balancing his family life with his career and that caused some emotional traumas to him. To add on the various traumas, one of the campers who were with his sister was found and that brought questions on whether his sister was alive. This shows that the writer wanted the reader to be empathetic of the condition of the protagonist in the story. The internal conflict which the protagonist battles are balancing his work and family and that brings some emotional traumas to him (Coben). Another internal conflict being faced by the protagonist was the fact that his wife, father, mother and sister were dead and that brought emotional traumas because he was left alone with family.

There are various ways in which emotions are built in the short story. After the discovery of the homicide victim, Cope was more emotional because thoughts on whether his sister was alive started forming on his mind and that created emotional problems to him (Coben). Since Cope was the county prosecutor of Essex, he had to decide whether to explore more into the case or just leave it that way because it brought some old emotions about his sister. 

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The various protagonists in the short stories are shown to be more active all over the three short stories. The writers of the three short stories emphasize more on the protagonist and bring aspects of empathy towards the protagonist in the short stories. There are internal conflicts regarding emotions of love depicted from the various protagonists. This help in shaping the emotions of the various stories. The emotions from the three stories are extracted from love and the feeling of anger and being hurt. This shows that the three short stories are connected because of the way elaborate more on the various issues of love, anger, and emotions.

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  1. Coben, Harlan. The Woods. Orion publishers, 2009. Pdf.
  2. Joyce, James. Araby. Createspace Independent Publishers, 2014. Pdf.
  3. King, Stephen. Christine. Simon and Schuster, 2016. Pdf.
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