Summary Of Matthew Null's Telemetry

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Matthew Null develops trout as a motif in his story “Telemetry;” the motif functions to show the theme of the abuse of locals in West Virginia, and it sheds light on the protagonist’s internal struggle to leaving her home. Kathryn and a team of researchers, named Gary and Michael, study the West Virginia state fish of native brook trout in an effort to determine facts about their unusual movement. This essay will focus on how trout function to show the abuse of locals by outsider companies, the movement that Kathryn desires, and the behavior of locals and outsiders. These different functions of trout add up to a general commentary on life in West Virginia.
The results of Kathryn’s studies on native brook trout comment on the differences between lives of locals and outsiders by considering their movement. Null
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However, the trout “turn and let the river take them, take them, with passive grace.” The repetition is significant because the tout let these pressures “take them” as they do not fight against the current or “pressures.” Rather, they “drift” along as Kathryn wants to do. She says, “the current always trues [the trout], like compass needles.” The current is a constant flow that gives the trout direction. Kathryn on the other hand, feels the pressure or desire to leave, but she seems to push back against her current. The fish merely drift along with “passive grace” forcing nothing, and Kathryn “feels wise” as she observes them. Feeling “wise,” as defined in Merriam-Webster online, means Kathryn feels that looking at the trout gives her the capacity for sound judgement. Hence, the trout’s passive drift and trueness to the current is what Kathryn feels is right. This reveals her desire to “drift” or move on with the
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