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The Swimmer Analysis



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    The Swimmer Are you scared? Anxious? Afraid? Fearful? No? Mull it over. Still no? I don’t believe you. If yes, don’t worry, we all are. Almost everyone has a fear of something. Sometimes it is the fear of what comes next, the fear of making a bad decision, the fear of emotions, the fear of a specific person and sometimes it is just the fear of rippling water from the nearby river that plagues a person the most. Great or small we are all haunted by someone or something and face a choice with regards to it.

    We can choose either to fight it or run from it and allow it to torment us until the end of days. This essay deals with a story about how to realize and overcome your fear. The Swimmer is a short Story from the anthology, the best English short stories 201 1 and is written by S. J. Butler from Essex, I-JK. A female works in an office with close proximity to a river. For a longer period of time, she had admired the steady flow of water but despite this she had refrained from taking the feared dip. The girl had a fear of the water.

    However, on a day like any other, she managed to overcome her fear and she swam with a swan in the cold water. She did so for many days until the allure of the swan grew to uch a degree that she had to approach it. It turned out that the swan had been trapped since she first had laid her eye on it. Finally, she sets the swan free and they float away together. The initial focus of this essay will be a description of the setting: “Three weeks of windless sun weigh down on the fields; nothing moves except the water, slow, steady, a slick of olive green pouring away from her. (l. 3-5, p. ) The reader is met with a stationary and non-developing environment. Also, the setting is described to be a place where the temperature is extremely hot – and it has been so for a prolonged period of time. The setting consists of many contrasts. Everything in the entire valley is stationary. The only thing in emotion is the water, and the only way to be cooled down, in the overheated area, is to step into the water. In order to make a change in her stationary every-day life, she has to overcome her fear.

    The heat creates an unbearable work environment, and the cooling aspects of the river are the only solution. This is why the setting is vital to the story. The story is written with a third person narrator and despite this, the name of the main character is not informed. The narrator is omniscient and therefore e get an inner perspective of the main character. The inner perspective is carried out in a fully described way and the author uses a broad cast of adjectives: “Heavy sultry air clamps her head. ” (l. 26, p. ) The adjectives assist in the depiction of both the main character’s development as well as the environment. The story is mainly written in present tense, but some sentences are written in past tense. This underlines the fact that the main character has undergone a transformation and she had attempted overcoming her fear before: “She came this far once before She turned back. She doesn’t look at the water today. ” (l. 42, p. 2) In this sentence the tense shift from past tense to present tense. Her development is also expressed when she is in the water.

    Suddenly she is not afraid anymore but confidant: “Encouraged, she decides to swim upstream as far as the bridge behind her house. “(l. 60, p. 2) This act would not occur for a person inhibited by their fear. She is elated and proud of herself, and this makes her do things she never thought she would be able to do. She is even enjoying the water, where she relaxes and describes it as, “luxuriant’. But she is still cautious and uspicious. This is phrased in the element of the swan: “The swan looks down at her and she looks away, afraid to meet its 80, p. ) The swan can be interpreted as a symbol of her own fear, and the swan draws her to the thought of facing it. In the end the swan (her fear) is set free, and so is she: “She moves aside and lets the current take the bird she lets the current take her too. ” (l. 156, p. 5) This is a Story, where we See e clear development in the character, from afraid to almost forgetting her fear. In the end she has overcome her fear in such way that it’s only “a puff in the distance”(l. 59, p. 6) She no longer sees the fear as an obstacle for her to swim. She is no longer afraid” (l. 120, p. 5). This essay is a great example of how you confront and conquer your fear. It shows the reader how it will be worth the struggle. The main character feels free in the end, and the reader can possibly feel inspired to get that feeling. Yes, we are all afraid of something – but just as the main character confronted her fear, you can do as well. Are you ready to grab the bull by the horns and face your fear? Are you ready to set your personal swan free?

    The Swimmer Analysis. (2017, Jul 21). Retrieved from

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