Symbolism In The Storyteller

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“Inside each of us is a monster, inside each of us is a saint. The real question is which one we nurture the most, which one will smite the other” (Picoult 111). Everyone has a good and bad side. However, depending on which one is chosen to be developed even further is what defines an individual. This makes it clear that the only person that can define oneself is the individual alone. The novel The Storyteller by Jodi Picoult is about a baker named Sage Singer living a life full of guilt due to the car accident resulting her mother to die. This strong emotion she is with holding in her heart keeps her in the past. While living this life, she meets a senior man, Josef Weber, at a grief support group who is also suffering from a painful past…show more content…
This is apparent with the scar on the face of Sage has a deeper meaning beyond just a permanent mark. When describing her scar, she states, “It isn’t a scar to me, really. It’s a map of where my life went wrong” (10). This scar symbolizes guilt, like a stamp to remind her of what happened in the past. This permanent mark on her face keeps her in her past because of the guilt she feels about the accident. Also, the view of others when looking at her scarred face reflects how she sees herself. It displays how she cannot let go of her past. However, when she decides to confidently show her scarred face in front of strangers, this is when she overcomes the challenge she has been suffering from for so long. Accepting the past permitted Sage to comprehend that the past has nothing to do with her present self. Additionally, the story Minka has written holds its own significance. She has deliberately stopped the story before the ending was revealed. This demonstrates how “Fiction comes in all shapes and sizes” (460). The story Minka has written represents life. How there is no true ending to the story depicts life to have no restrictions. It is up to the individual to write their own lives. Furthermore, the tattoo is a mark that reminds Minka what has happened in the concentration camps were real. Nonetheless, she does not let it stop her from living a life that she wants even though she was treated badly. When Sage asks about her tattoo, Minka says, “Everything before…well, that happened to a different person” (67). Minka understands that living in her past will bring her everything but happiness. That is the reason behind why she has let the past go and has started a new life. The idea that her past does not influence who she is today is also communicated with Minka keeping her tattoo covered. Therefore, symbolism within the novel demonstrates how the present self of a
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