Dark Brown Dog

In: English and Literature

Submitted By kamaln
Words 798
Pages 4
Kamal Namou
Comp. Lit. 121
Response Paper

The short story of A Dark Brown Dog by Stephen Crane has meaning even before the story begins, its creative title brings to mind a dark brown dog who represents a man just being freed from the chains of slavery. The author, Shane Crane, uses his own experiences of owning a dog as a young boy and how the dog reacted to that. This makes symbolism the main literary element used throughout this story. Being written in 1890 the story is a response to the reconstruction era in the Untied States shortly after the time period of slavery was abolished known as Jim Crow. This was a time here in the United States after the civil war when slaves had been emancipated, and equality was supposedly underway. Unfortunately as we all know that was not the case, many blacks were still subjected to slavery in different ways across the country. In the story the dark brown dog takes on the role of a former slave, the symbolism then begins with a rope tied around the poor dog. It shows how yes the slave may now be “free”, but what can he do with that freedom when he has nowhere to live so the dog is forced to walk the long lonely path hoping someone will come and save him. When the dog is explained to be stumbling and awkwardly moving it resembles that of a being not knowing what to make of its newfound freedom without guidance. Then a little boy is introduced showing the new generation of southerners in the United States. When the two meet they regard each other with curiosity as two strangers from different worlds do, then the dog makes a move towards the boy and they start to play. But since the dog had never really experienced this feeling he gets too excited and the boy has to beat the poor thing to put it in its place. People still do this to dogs nowadays so imagine more than one hundred years ago when blacks were almost…...

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