Symbolism In The Belly Of The Whale

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The “Belly of the Whale” situation, an allusion to the biblical story of Jonah and the whale, is the hero’s near death experience and his symbolical rebirth. “The hero, instead of conquering or conciliating the power of the threshold, is swallowed into the unknown, and would appear to have died. […] the passage of the threshold is a form of self-annihilation […]. But here, instead of passing outward, beyond the confines of the visible world, the hero goes inward, to be born again” (Campbell 83-84). As soon as the hero “crosses the first threshold” and escapes the “belly of the whale” he is a changed man and his previous life is no more. The everyday man becomes the hero. “The hero appears to die, but is resurrected, perhaps in a new form. The hero’s old self has died, a new one born. Although the belly is dark and scary, it represents the final split between the known and unknown worlds and thus the start of enlightenment. Here the hero shows his willingness…show more content…
It is in its garbage disposal system where Luke and his friends are almost killed. They are ultimately saved by C3PO just in the nick of time. From another perspective, the “Belly of the Whale” situation for Luke might be considered him entering the cave on Dagobah and facing his ultimate fear. It is in this cave where the dark side of the Force is particularly strong and where Luke learns a valuable lesson. The temptation of the dark side is so strong that Luke gives in to it, his own passion, and soon realizes that it is his own face behind Vader’s mask. This vision might imply his fears that he could turn to the dark side and that he is not strong enough to resist it. On the other hand, it might be seen as a premonition of his true identity and the identity of his
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