Symbolism In Under The Persimmon Tree By Suzanne Staples

2257 Words10 Pages

(AGG) Why would authors include symbolism in their books? (BS-1) The use of a major symbol in Under the Persimmon Tree by Suzanne Fisher Staples is seen when Najmah gets her first haircut after her family is killed and her home is destroyed.(BS-2) Other than using the haircut to show Najmah’s reaction to important events, Staples also includes stars as another symbolic idea. (BS-3) The author uses the stars again and a second haircut to demonstrate Najmah’s development and growth. (TS) Suzanne Fisher Staples uses symbolism to help readers better understand the development of a main character Najmah, and how she reacts to each significant event. (MIP-1) The author uses the first haircut after the deaths of Najmah’s mother and baby …show more content…

(SIP-A) Throughout her perilous journey with Khalida and Akhtar, the stars disappear and reappear, displaying her thoughts and emotions. (STEWE-1) Najmah no longer has faith, or even hope in herself to find and reunite with her father and brother after the destruction of her family. Najmah asks herself, “What can anyone say to me now?” (Staples 83). She is clearly blaming herself, feeling as if she failed Baba-jan by not being able to protect her mother and baby brother. They were her responsibility, and although she could have done nothing to save them, she almost accuses herself. “As the stars disappear one by one, Akhtar leads us away from the path..” (Staples 85). The stars symbolize her thoughts as the distance between her and her family grows until she can no longer see them. The disappearing stars represent her home and family, shattered and broken beyond repair. (STEWE-2) In the beginning of her journey, Najmah does not know anything regarding to her family. “I retreat into thoughts of my father and brother, wondering where they are, whether they have food…” (Staples 101). The stars have disappeared, symbolizing her worries about Baba-jan and Nur, not knowing anything about where or how they are. Although she is silent, her mind constantly …show more content…

SIP-A) As her character has changed, so has Najmah’s view of the stars. (STEWE-1) Najmah sees a meteor, what she thought as a ‘sword’ one night with Nusrat. Najmah believed that,“When the sword appears in the sky, you know you'll draw your last breath!” (Staples 224). Najmah is afraid of the meteor, thinking it is evil, after having seen in prior to the deaths of her mother and baby brother. Nusrat calmly explains to her that, “The Black Stone fell from heaven...How can it be evil if it's a part of the world’s holiest shrine? (Staples 226). Therefore, after knowing that the meteor is not a sign of evil, but of a miracle, Najmah starts to learn the different names of the stars she has seen her whole life.(STEWE-2) Nusrat teaches Najmah to see the sky, “differently...I feel as unimportant as a speck of dust in it” (Staples 227). Her whole life, Baba-Jan has taught Najmah mythical stories about the stars. Nusrat teaches her something very differently, how the sky is endless space and time. This is a comforting thought to Najmah because after everything that has happened to her family, she hopes to move on. (SIP-B) Najmah finds herself and where she belongs after overcoming so many hardships. (STEWE-1) The haircut she

Open Document