Elements of Style in "Popular Mechanics"

Essay by bridget5246University, Bachelor'sA+, June 2014

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The story "Popular Mechanics" by Raymond Carver is a movie that leaves a lot to the imagination in the end. The tone of this story starts off as dark and ominous as Carver states, "Cars slushed by on the street outside, where it was getting dark. But it was getting dark on the inside too" (Carver 334). His comparison of the weather and the inside of the house shows that the situation inside is cold and dark and sets you up for the remaining of the story. Once we are inside, the tone changes to agression and anger as Carver shows that the unnamed man in the story is pushing clothes into a suitcase. His wife starts screaming at him, "I'm glad you're leaving! I'm glad you're leaving! she said. Do you hear? Son of a bitch! I'm so glad you're leaving" which shows the intensity and tension between them.

(Carver 334) I also think that the line, "Son of a bitch!" is one that shows diction and Carver uses it to display her hatred towards her significant other.

Carver uses irony and symbolism throughout this story to show how their relationship is falling apart. Carver references the word little in two different spots, "Streaks of it ran down from the little shoulder high window that faced the backyard," and "She stood in the doorway of the little kitchen, holding the baby"(334). This symbolism shows that their home is too small for them and that like their relationship, there is no room to grow and blossom together. Their relationship is ironic, because the whole story the couple is fighting and hurting each other, but then turn their attention towards the baby that they both want. While fighting for the baby in a sort of tug-a-war style, neither of them are...