The Hand Colette

472 Words2 Pages
Every young girl dreams about her wedding day. As the day approaches, the excitement of being a spouse and a lover can be all encompassing. However, when the wedding is over, reality sets in and, perhaps with it, the fear of the future and the unknown. In the short story, “The Hand,” the author, Sidonie-Gabrielle Colette, utilizes color connotation, beast-like imagery, and vivid diction to portray the complexity of the relationship between the husband and the wife. Colors are often used in connection with feelings or memories. In this story, Colette was able to take advantage of this to help amplify a swift change. Towards the beginning of the story the colors periwinkle and blue are used, which give a feeling of tranquility and peace. Only a few moments later, the color red dominates the stage, which evokes a sense of fear, violence, and blood. Colette used these contrasting colors to show the complexity of their relationship. Therefore, on one level the wife finds her husband fresh and inviting, but on another level she is terrified of him. As the wife’s fear grows, so does the husband’s grotesqueness, which is evident through Colette’s use of beast-like imagery. Midway through the story, the wife observes as her husband’s hand takes on “a vile, apelike appearance.” Apes tend to have a violent and hairy reputation. In this…show more content…
The author selects the words “methodical pleasure of the strangler” to put in her writing. The word “strangler” stems from the essence of the beast because both radiate strength. “Methodical pleasure” is the step a tertiary level of complexity. These words show that the violence was not a barbaric force, but a well-practiced technique. Keeping with the same elaborate level, Colette writes about a “slice” of bread instead of a “piece.” When the husband says this, it alludes to an act of precision, not of mistake. As a result, the wife is further frightened by her
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