JONATHAN SAFRAN FOER EXTREMLY LOUD & INCREDIBLY CLOSE Contents Self-defense was something that I was extremely curious about, for obvious. Extremely Loud & Incredibly Close. Read more · Extremely Loud & Incredibly Close · Read more · Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close: A Novel. Read more. PETER ROBINSON CLOSE TO HOME A NOVEL OF SUSPENSE For Sheila The glory dropped from their youth and love, And both.

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Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close Mti a Novel by Jonathan Safran Foer PDF - Free download as PDF File .pdf), Text File .txt) or read online for free. Jonathan Safran Foer emerged as one of the most original writers of his generation with his best-selling debut novel, Everything Is Illuminated. Now, with humor. Extremely Loud & Incredibly Close, Foer takes on death, love, sex, pain, . Click PDF Full-Text link to view article. Click “PDF Full Text” link to.

I can't stop thinking about that night, the clusters of red flares, the sky, that was like black water, and how only hours before I lost everything, I had everything. Foer The similarity between Thomas Schell and his grandson seems striking when taking a look at the passage presented.

Constant thinking is exactly the same effect of traumatization that can be found in Oskar's character. In comparison Thomas' wording: That's how my brain was. The overall picture shows that both characters suffer from nearly the same haunting pain, namely a trauma that has not been worked through properly yet.

His second letter is filled with striking corrections. Red circles slowly but gradually start to take over page for page, until the letter nearly resembles one big correction. While the initial circles highlight 'real' mistakes, such as ''actreses'' see Foer , the pattern soon become irreproducible. The corrections merge closer and closer together, a technique which shall be discussed in the upcoming sections in more detail.

However, it seems that Thomas becomes overwhelmed by his emotions. It seems that the more brutal and detailed the content gets, the more red ink is used. Thomas descriptions of fire, noise and death are lumed by the corrections, they nearly cover the actual content of the letter. It is unclear what Foer wants to tell the reader with this. Is it a link to the dead son, who used to correct the New York Times see Foer 10? Is it a graphical depiction of blood or fire?

Is it just an eyecatcher? All of these interpretations can be regarded as somewhat right, yet the last one seems the most plausible. Thomas' survivor guilt, and the trauma it caused seems to be the keywords when taking a look at the letter. One can almost imagine him writing the letter and getting more and more emotionally involved. Caruth mentions in this connection ''that survival itself [ Thomas desperately writes until he reaches a point where just every word he writes, and the whole letter itself, in which the risk of ''[ In this context, Migner states, that the modern novel makes itself depends on the characters it introduces.

The required forms and structures are derived from the figures presented In contrast to that, Eaglestone concludes his analysis of Foer's novel by stating that the structural aspects presented in Extremely ''mark the failure of the novel to get to the issues'' He uses a brief interpretation of one of the book's central moments namely the return of Oskar's grandfather.

Thomas comes finally back to New York City in , exactly two years after September He plans to see his grandson and his wife, he has left 40 years ago, and wants to begin his ''second life'' Foer with her. The chapter starts off with two black and white photographs 6 which graphically separate the chapter from the previous one. Eaglestone states that these ''Sebald-esque photographs both illuminate and illustrate the end point of communication'' Eaglestone's analysis misses the point here.

The photographs, which show the words ''Yes'' and ''No'' tattooed on Thomas Schell's hands, rather present a shift of communication methods and conventions, not a total loss of them. Regarding the character's background, expressing himself by use of 'normal' language is simply ''[.. Due to the fact that the photos of Thomas' hands can be regarded as text, since they -literally- contain it, Uytterschout compares the photos with the book's front cover: Filled up with the usual information, such as author and title and colored in a striking, shiny red, the hand on the cover leaves literally no space for anything else7.

Uytterschout contrasts this jammed image to the information on Thomas' hands: However, one has to keep in mind that Uytterschout might overinterpret here, since the cover might be simply composed the way it is to promote and market the novel.

The chapter immediately following the photographs consist of a letter Thomas Shell has written to ''my [his] child'' Foer Uytterschout applies LaCapra's theory of ''writing trauma'' on the presentation of Thomas' letter.

He states that ''in literary terms, writing trauma can ''achieve articulation in different combinations and hybridized forms'' These forms start to become clear with the very title of the chapter. Starting with: All images referred to can be found in the appendix; See appendix A 7 Note: See appendix B 8 Note: As an aphasic, he simply cannot utter the words he wants to express and needs to rely solely on writing to express himself to the outside world.

His only possibility to convey or to ''write his trauma'' Uytterschout 65 is by using structural gimmicks. The first structural aspect that clearly sticks out of the rest of the main body of the letter is when Thomas is asked the purpose of his visit at the airport: Striking out the word ''mourn'' means more for Thomas than just a correction of an error.

In fact it is impossible for him to erase the word -and his emotions- constantly.

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Foer could have simply made him use a pencil, but instead Thomas writes with a permanent pen. This single crossed-out word reflects a crucial message of the book.

Oskar's grandfather on the one hand tries to go on with his life, but on the other hand is unable to leave his grief behind. In this context, Sien Uytterschout quotes Sandra Gilbert by stating that ''[…] writing about traumatic events and sharing experiences with others will never make them undone. Oskar's grandfather shows clear symptoms of survivor guilt see also Uytterschout and Versluys par. Thomas feels guilty for beeing still alive, an important factor of his trauma, which shall later be discussed in more detail in the section concerned with Grandmother Schell.

However, the problem of an adequate expression of feelings is a theme prominent throughout the whole chapter. Eaglestone gives only a brief summary of the passage: Disregarding the fact that Eaglestone places the two passages in the wrong order, his analysis fails again, since it is not sufficient and too general. He subsumes his findings under the bold conclusion that ''all these textual tricks serve to delimit the text, to mark what it cannot do'' 20 , which is not true, since the passages discussed rather show what the text in 9 Note: Thomas calling his wife to pour his heart out to her is just another example and strikes the reader by introducing a code language: I pressed ''4, 3, 5, 6,'' she said ''Hello?

I wanted to reach my hand through the mouthpiece, down the line and into her room, I wanted to reach YES [.. What I wondered, is the sum of my life? His call stresses the fact that he simply cannot talk to his wife, since he is handicapped, but simply taking this notion at face value would mean only scratching the surface. Throughout the novel, it never becomes clear whether Thomas has put himself in this condition deliberately or if he suffers from aphasia due to a shock caused by the bombing of Dresden.

Migner's theory of a structure that is derived from the character s can therefore not only be applied directly to Thomas but to Oskar and -later on- his grandmother as well, since they all make use of distinctive forms and structures. Regarding this, the term 'code', realized concretely by use of a numeric code, and its communicative use can additionally be understood in its linguistic sense. Communication is based on encoding, sending and decoding. All of the three traumatized characters encode and send their message s differently.

Coming back to Thomas, the code he uses in this case displays his angry despair, his sadness and his ''overpowering inability to put his feelings into comprehensible communication'' Uytterschout 70 , yet remains futile, since his wife cannot 'decode' his words. The question is whether Oskar's grandfather stopped talking simply because actually uttering words has failed him profoundly in the past and still disappoints in the present.

The switch of communication from speaking to writing seems to offer unexpected possibilities. Leaving a 'gap' in spoken language is only temporary, and a pause between words can never express a caesura as an actual physical gap that separates written words constantly by banning them on paper. However, throughout the letter Thomas addresses to his son, even writing seems not sufficient: The following 2.

Is Thomas explaining his incapability of expressing himself, or is Foer explicitly addressing the reader through his character? The second assumption would clearly contradict Doderer's notion of the modern American novel. He stresses that modern novels are still classified as neorealistic or naturalistic and elicits that modern authors fulfill a function comparable to a camera lens.

Never do authors hustle themselves between the reader and a novel's reality This notion yet again leads to the consequence that Extremely is not a realistic novel.

The question is if a novel can be realistic at all. Migner states that the very intention of describing something in a realistic way encounters resistances, when it isput into articulation.

The consequence is a reality, which the reader cannot grasp at first sight The creation of this new perception of reality is a crucial aspect in Foer's novel. Whenever the characters in Extremely cannot cope with their reality, this is reflected in the book's structure. Foer's role as an active participant in the presentation of the book's plot can therefore be analyzed as an author who becomes an ''inherent part of the narrated poetic reality [ Even ''writing trauma'' LaCapra qtd in Uytterschout 65 down seems to come to a critical point.

It is hard to say whether writing really failed at this point, or if Thomas just sees no other possibility to express himself. The word adequacy again comes to the fore when analyzing this passage. Thomas' words merge closer and closer together, while the letters become smaller at the same time. By frantically typing over his own words again and again, he soon creates an unreadable black block of letters.

Uytterschout subsumes this as follows: The blackness presented can sure be analyzed as incomprehensibility, since the access to Thomas' thoughts is literally blocked to the reader and even to himself. Uytterschout sees this ''as an attempt on Foer's part to involve the reader as an active participant in the unravelling of trauma'' 71 , while Keith Gessen describes him in this context as ''the ultimate Foer narrator'' All of the interpretations are right, yet it is difficult to tell if the blackness reflects inaccessibility, incomprehensibility, the general psychological state of a trauma victim or even all of it combined.

The overall picture seems to be that of a structure that reflects the fact that ''there is never ''world enough and time'' [original emphasis]'' 61 to talk about everything the writer -in this case writers, namely Thomas Schell and Foer- want to talk about. Even if the overall interpretation of the chapter discussed and Thomas Schell's notebook in general remain controversial, it can surely not be analyzed as Foer's cheap try to use random structural gimmicks to avoid using actual language, as some authors like to subsume it Eaglestone; Munson qtd.

Mitchum Huehls highlights a possible pitfall of Foer's structure, namely that the reader is confronted with ''formal techniques [ For Huehls it seems controversial that the book contains parts which try to perform events for the reader by reproducing them.

He mentions that even if Oskar's business card is reproduced in the text, it does not look like a business card at all. The techniques used are rather ''quasi-performative''.

This is also true to Thomas Schell's daybook The problem seems rather obvious: According to Huehls, the novel unintentionally destroys the illusion it tries to create. Oskar's business card can be seen and analyzed as a 'real' card, or just as a box containing text, which pretends to be a business card.

The same is true for grandfather Schell's daybook. Huehls states that by using the same font as the rest of the novel, Thomas Schell's daybook does not achieve a consistent performativity This notion can of course be applied to every passage that contains deviant structural elements and thus, disassemble every single technique by showing its weaknesses.

Huehls, for example elaborates on this, by criticizing that: The grandfather's daybook thus reveals that the text's overall performativity breaks down because sometimes it claims actually to be the thing that we are reading about e. Huehls misses an important fact here: There is no evidence why the reader should regard some passages of the book as representing reality rather than being real. Even if 12 ''letter'' because he did not actually sent it, but wrote it down in his daybook only.

Scheuren 29 Huehls tries to prove his theory by showing the novel's flaws, its reality can at no point of time be put into question. No reader can seriously expect a book to copy reality itself.

Still, the question remains why Foer uses reproduction of textual elements to a varying degree. In some points of the book the structure presented is more elaborate than in other parts, without any identifiable justification.

Still the framework of illusion and thus, the structural representation of trauma does not fall apart because of these weaknesses.

No modern reader expects a book to accomplish a mimesis of reality , therefore Huehls' theory cannot be agreed on. The text remains performative even if some 'slips' remain present. Ingersoll underlines this fact by stating that even if the written texts are ''fragile and inadequate'' they seems to be more ''functional'' than spoken language 62 in terms of written representation of trauma and a literary dealing with its consequences.

However, even Thomas' deep rooted trauma and melancholy start to slightly burst when he finally faces his grandson.

Oskar presents Thomas the phone he has hidden from anybody else, and which has the last words of his father on its mailbox. By letting Thomas listen to the recording of his father's last call, Oskar partially shares his trauma with him, even though he does not know that he is his grandfather and not, as he still believes, just his grandmother's renter.

Not only Oskar's psyche shows the first indications of healing in this situation. The link between Thomas and his son becomes obvious: The mute father listens to the taped voice of his dead son. As a reaction to this, Thomas starts to share his feelings as well.

The old man eventually shows Oskar the letters he had written to his son: Foer The passage highlights Thomas first step towards a cure to his trauma, namely opening himself to his grandson and thus beginning to work through his traumatic experience. Revealing the feelings he has hidden for so long seem to be the initiating moment in losing the muteness of his emotions. Yet it is unsure whether the character will ever fully recover, or as Uytteschout and Versluys phrase it: The issue of bodily survival is logically tied up with the question whether or not one can emotionally recover from trauma.

If recovery stands for regaining full 'health', then it is impossible'' par. While Oskar's grandfather wrote against the "impossibility to say everything there is still left to say" Zemanek 36 , quite the opposite is true for his grandmother, or as Uytterschout and Versluys state it: In her first letter she talks about her life in Germany and how much she wanted everybody to write her a letter.

Eventually she asks her maternal grandmother to write her, a crucial part of the chapter through which the reader gains a first insight in Grandmother Schell's mind: I didn't have any interest in knowing her. I have no need for the past, I thougt, like a child.

I did not consider the past might have a need for me. It was the story of her life. She wrote, I wish I could be a girl again, with the chance to live my life again. I have suffered so much more than I needed to. And the joys I have felt have not always been joyous. I could have lived differently Foer The ultimate phrase in her grandmother's letter at the same time forms the ultimate statement of Grandmother Schell's self-doubts. She feels guilty for having made the wrong decisions in her life.

Now, that the past is over and fixed, all that remains are her pangs of remorse. It seems that Oskar's grandmother used to have a communication problem, slightly comparable to her husband's. When she was a girl, she simply could not talk to people, yet not in a physical, but in the psychological sense. This becomes obvious when she reveals that she wanted to kiss her piano teacher, but due to the fact that she was to afraid of talking to him asked him to write a letter instead.

Grandmother Schell's need of getting to know people and their handwriting seems to be unsatiable, but yet remains nonsatisfactory for her: I had letters from everyone I knew.

I laid them out on my bedroom floor, and organized them by what they shared. One hundred letters. I was always moving them around, trying to make connections. I wanted to understand Foer 79 Grandmother Schell does not explain the root or drive of her ambitions.

Her search for connections might be seen as a general attempt to challenge life and its meaning s itself. In her description, she states that she '' [ The only way of achieving her goal seems for her to achieve a high profiency in English. Yet, learning idioms and reading magazines and newspaper all day long does not lead to the effect she has wished for. Afraid of being ''ridiculous'' she soon abandons her efforts see Foer The section presented provides valuable information about Grandmother Schell's ways of dealing with her trauma.

All in line with the stereotypical American idea of an immigrant, she wants to leave behind her past and start a new life in the United States. However, as a refugee of war, having literally lost all she had, she has no interest in keeping memory of her past anyway. Grandmother Schell just wants to forget and avoids coping with her past by creating a 'blankness', a feature which will be discussed in more detail later in this paper.

One of the main roots of Grandmother Schell's trauma is not only World War II itself, but also the loss of her beloved sister, Anna, the woman who carried Thomas' unborn child. Anna asks her sister not to tell anybody that she and Thomas had kissed behind their parents shed. Her sister promises her to be quiet about it, but Anna wants to be sure about it: She said, Why should I believe you?

I wanted to tell her, because what I saw would no longer be mine if I talked about it.

I said, Because I am your sister. Thank you. Foer 80 The reader does not understand the full complexety of the sisters' relationship at this point. The dialogue seems on the one hand to reveal Grandmother Schell's urge to 'collect' again, but on the other hand, shows that she is hiding her real emotions from her sister.

It is not before the very last page of her third letter to Oskar, that she reveals her real emotions and one of the main reasons of her trauma: It was late and we were tired. We assumed there would be other nights. Anna's breathing started to slow, but I still wanted to talk.

She rolled on the other side. She was my sister. We slept in the same bed. There was never a right time to say it. It was always unnecessary [ It's always necessary. The fact that she is a ''talker'' seems to be a factor deeply manifested in her letters.

The paragraph presented above shows her eventual summary of her laborious diction. It is the guilt of never having revealed her true emotions to her sister that makes up one of the major factors of her trauma as a whole. Guilt plays an important role in Grandmother Schell's life. She feels guilty for almost everything bad that happened to her or her loved ones. She even states that she feels guilty for collecting the letters she has received, which seems to be a rather childish, yet comprehensible reaction, considering her character: Only one thing seems to temporarily distract her from her pain, namely her husband, Thomas Schell.

However, after their first meeting in the United States, Grandmother Schell's guilt and the feeling of being left alone for a second time seem to become unbearable for her. According to Uytterschout and Versluys, she shows a clearly suicidal behavior: I started to walk off. I was going to walk to the Hudson River and keep walking. I would carry the biggest stone I could bear and let my lungs fill with water Foer 82 Yet, the passage above seems problematic.

Even if victims of trauma often channel their grief into acts of self-destruction, or in this case, its ultimate form, suicide, it is yet not clear if Grandmother Schell really planned to killed herself, or just subconsciously thought about it. One fact remains without a doubt, namely a link to Oskar's bruises, and maybe even Thomas' muteness, as acts of self-destruction and self-punishment. In this context, Uytterschout and Versluys state that Grandmother Schell clearly reflects the same struggle as her husband, namely that of wavering between a crisis of life and a crisis of death.

During her first meeting with Thomas, he denies who he is or that he has ever met her before: Are you Thomas? I asked.

Trauma in Jonathan Safran Foer’s "Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close"

He schook his head no. You are, I said. I know you are. I remember you. I used to watch you kiss my sister. He took out a little book and wrote, I don't speak. I'm sorry. That made me cry. He wiped away my tears. But he did not admit to being who he was. He never did. Foer 81 The fate of Oskar's grandparents intertwines in this very situation. Thomas asks his dead girlfriend's sister to pose for him, since he wants to create his first sculpture since his time in Germany.

The woman agrees, but soon has to face an endless act of repetitive behavior: Both of them have coffee, Thomas sculpts her, but yet they never really talk about what has happened to them see Foer The question: Why is that?.

She writes very objectively; her sentences almost resemble a staccato-style: He would position me. He would sculpt me. The fact that each of these sentences is divided by a new line enhances this notion. In this context, it is possible to connect Siegel's interpretation of Oskar's scrapbook with Grandmother Schell's textual presentation of trauma.

She states that Oskar's book creates foreshadowings and flashbacks which demonstrate operations of memory see par. The same is true for his Grandmother's descriptions. The choppy style of her sentences not only the notion of her as a ''talker'', but also underlines the effect trauma has on her way of memorizing and writing down events. Deep emotions, in the sense of love, however do not play an important role in the couple's relationship right from the start.

Schell is very aware of this fact, as she states that: I did not need to know if he could love me. Scheuren 34 I needed to know if he could need me. Foer 84 The essence of this statement and the whole relationship itself seems obvious. Schell needs somebody, yet nobody to love, but just anybody to care for, it seems.

Thomas clearly sees the image of his dead girlfriend in her sister. In fact he has sculpted an image of Anna, and not of her sister, the actual model, all along, which surely has not happened by accident. Yet again, denial and suppression play an important role when looking at both characters.

Their trauma has affected them to an extend, to which their wish and drive of actually loving a person is suppressed and denied. However, as a climax in their relationship, Grandmother Schell proposes to Thomas to marry her, to which he responds positively, yet with fixed arrangements: Thomas and his wife promise each other to have no children see Foer 85 as their first rule.

The couple also abandons their mother-tonuge, German, and from that day on, uses English exclusively. Eventually, Grandmother Schell breaks the first rule of her relationship: She gets pregnant with Oskar's father, because she ''[ As a reaction, Thomas leaves her and the baby on their own and never contacts her during his absence. He repeatedly states throughout the novel that he cannot bear his son living, due to the fact that he is afraid to lose him, which again is a fear clearly rooted in the traumatic loss he experienced during the war.

However, one could see Thomas' reaction as a reflection of his state in between life and death again. He is afraid to live, maybe of life itself, and therefore does not want to bring new life into the world. Nevertheless, Mrs. Schell seems to come to terms with her new situation: When your grandfather left me forty years ago, I erased all of his writing. It took me as long as I had known him to get rid of all of his words.

Like turning an hourglass over. I thought he had to look for what he was looking for, and realize it no longer existed, or never existed. Foer Oskar's grandmother does not drown in self-pity in this situation. The aspect of 'just going on' is an important aspect of her character and distinguishes her from her husband, who cannot let go of the past.

Nevertheless, even if Grandmother Schell is actually able to live, she is still haunted by the past. In her last letter she admits that she ''had been dreaming about where [she] came from'' Foer , which might be seen as an indication of recurring memories or nightmares, another typical feature of trauma. Still another traumatic link seems to be obvious: Grandmother Schell dreams of the bombing of Dresden. In her dream the planes go backwards, while the bombs fly back from the ground into the machines see Foer This passage reveals a striking similarity to Oskar's daydream towards the end of the novel, in which the attacking planes move away from the World Trade Center, making the ''worst day'' Foer 12 unhappen.

The third and final letter to Oskar is concerned with a very important change in his Grandmother's life.

Thomas Schell eventually comes back to her, only to leave her again. She reacts rather cool on the outside, but her thoughts reveal that she isoverwhelmed with joy, stating that she wants to be as close to him as possible see Foer Schell even explicitly states that she does not want Thomas to leave: I wanted him to have good memories, so that maybe he would come back again one day'' Foer Yet, Grandmother Schell knows that she and her husband are living an illusion.

Only through Thomas' letters learns the reader about the couple's life after he came back to New York City.

Wyatt refers to the couple's marriage as ''a marriage of millimeters Thomas and his wife have created ''Nothing Spaces'', spaces which provides them with the distance they needed to live together, although they are not living together. Spaces like that are situated all over their appartment, and whenever one of them enters, this person ceases to exist to the other one. The couple does not even look at each other while having sex.

Both characters are thus changing from being alive to being dead all the time; a situation which might reflect the inner conflict both of them suffered from, due to their past experiences. Wyatt even refers to Thomas Schell's leaving as a ''[ Eventually Thomas Schell wants his wife to write down the story of her life in such a ''Nothing Space'' , which seems to be a striking request, since it describes the exact opposite of Thomas' way of coping with his traumatic experience, namely remaining silent.

This 'non-existence' plays an important role in her narration as a whole. Even in her very first letter it is a prominent feature, comparable to Thomas' merging letters or Oskar's crossing out of words. As to structural representation, Uytterschout states that Grandmother Schell ''feverishly composes'' 67 her life story on her typewriter and thus, actually produces 'proper text', which yet is deeply affected by her own personal trauma: One million pieces of paper filled the sky.

Extremely Loud .pdf - Throughout the book of Extremely Loud...

They stayed there, like a ring around the building. What if you could actually hear everyone's heartbeat? His goal is hopeful, but the past speaks a loud warning in stories of those who've lost loved ones before.

As Oskar roams New York, he encounters a motley assortment of humanity who are all survivors in their own way. He befriends a year-old war reporter, a tour guide who never leaves the Empire State Building, and lovers enraptured or scorned. Ultimately, Oskar ends his journey where it began, at his father's grave. But now he is accompanied by the silent stranger who has been renting the spare room of his grandmother's apartment.

They are there to dig up his father's empty coffin. Fiction Literature. Publication Details Publisher: When she arrived in the United States, she read as many magazines as she could to integrate herself into the culture and language. As Anna's Oskar's grandfather's first love younger sister, she enters into a tumultuous marriage with Oskar's grandfather, and the couple breaks up before the events of the novel.

Black is an elderly man who is one hundred and three years of age, who lives in the same apartment building as Oskar, and joins him for some of his journey. Prior to meeting Oskar, Mr. Black had not left his apartment in twenty-four years, after having had a rather adventurous life.

He is nearly deaf, and cries after Oskar turns on his hearing aids after a "long time" where he was unable to hear. Oskar's grandfather, Thomas Schell Sr. After the death of his first love, Anna, Oskar's grandfather loses his voice completely and consequently tattoos the words "yes" and "no" on his hands. He carries around a "daybook" where he writes phrases he cannot speak aloud. He marries Anna's younger sister, Oskar's grandmother.

I. Introduction

Anna is an absent character. She is Oskar's grandfather's first love. Oskar's grandfather falls in love with her instantly. She is Oskar's grandmother's sister. Abby Black is William Black's ex-wife. She is forty-eight years old and lives by herself.

She is friendly and welcoming to Oskar when he arrives at her house, though she does decline Oskar's offer of a kiss. Oskar's father, Thomas Schell, dies before the events of the book begin, having been in 1 World Trade Center the day of the attacks. Oskar remembers him as caring, smelling of aftershave and always humming the song "I Am the Walrus" by The Beatles.

Thomas Schell organizes several expeditions for Oskar, such as a game to find an object from every decade of the past century. These adventures with his father are one of the reasons Oskar begins his journey about the key.

Stan is the doorman in the building Oskar lives in. He alerts Oskar when he has mail. Buckminster is Oskar's cat. Background[ edit ] Jonathan Safran Foer's inspiration for his main character came when having difficulty with another project. In an interview, Foer stated, "I was working on another story and I just started to feel the drag of it. And so, as a side project, I got interested in the voice of this kid. I thought maybe it could be a story; maybe it would be nothing.

I found myself spending more and more time on it and wanting to work on that". Foer was sleeping off jet lag after returning to New York City from a trip to Spain, when he was woken by a phone call from a friend: "He said, 'You have to turn on the TV, a plane has crashed into the World Trade Center. If you're in my position—a New Yorker who felt the event very deeply and a writer who wants to write about things he feels deeply about—I think it's risky to avoid what's right in front of you. Sien Uytterschout and Kristiaan Versluys have examined the specific types of trauma and recuperative measures that Oskar's grandmother and grandfather go through after the Dresden bombings and that Oskar goes through after the loss of his father.Typical of melancholic trauma victims is their inability or even refusal to talk about their past cf.

Yet certain patterns seem to overlap, such as the feature of repetition. His refusal to wear white clothes exclusively - a striking contrast to Hamlet's black clothes- see Foer 3 can be seen as futher proof of this. On the whole, though, it seems that Grandma is better at coping with her past than her husband. Wirth goes so far as to foreclose the phase of acceptance should the traumatic experience be suppressed. I was hoping you would. Some scholars e. Having survived while his lover perished, is torture for him.

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