Theme Of Goodbyes In Fever 1793

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In Laurie Halse Anderson’s historical fiction novel Fever 1793, a young girl named Mattie has to go through many hardships due to the Yellow Fever epidemic in Philadelphia. Mattie has to experience many deaths, losses, and even the fever herself. Anderson uses repetition and quotes at the beginning of chapters to express the theme, which is that goodbyes are difficult but can give the person saying those goodbyes valuable characteristics and can later on help them. One theme that represents Fever 1793 is that goodbyes are difficult, but can change the person having to say goodbye for the better. During the novel, Mattie has to say goodbye many times. One of those many times was with Grandfather. Grandfather died right in front of Mattie, because of a robber. She also had to…show more content…
For Mattie this goodbye, like many of the other ones, made her more mature and independent. Another time Mattie has to say goodbye was to a place instead of a person; Mattie has to say goodbye to the coffeehouse. Eliza and Lucille made Mattie leave because Lucille was sick. As a result, Mattie had to say goodbye to the place where she worked, lived, and grew up. The coffee house is significant because it represents where Mattie grew up, lived, worked, and spent her time. This means that Mattie is therefore having to say goodbye to her childhood as a result of the fever. Due to the fever, and due to this goodbye, Mattie is having to mature and become more of an adult throughout this fever. So, this goodbye changed Mattie. A last goodbye Mattie had to suffer was with Nell, an orphaned little girl that Mattie took under her wing and took care of. Mother Smith convinced Mattie that she had to take Nell to the orphanage instead of continuing to take care of her. Mattie could not say this goodbye, and the orphanage did not have anymore room. This teaches the reader that sometimes you do not
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