Automobiles in Short Fiction

4 April 2015
Cars as symbols (freedom, false values, power) in stories by Louise Erdrich (“Red Convertible”), Flannery O’Connor (Good Man Is Hard to Find) & John Steinbeck (Chrysanthemums).

The automobile is both a means of transportation and a symbol of American freedom, and it is used as a symbol of various aspects of American society by different authors. It becomes an explicit statement of freedom and a symbol of false American values in a story by Louise Erdrich, while its freedom is false in a story by Flannery O’Connor. John Steinbeck makes use of the automobile as a metaphor for control and power in The Chrysanthemums.

Automobiles in Short Fiction Essay Example

In The Red Convertible by Louise Erdrich, the automobile of the title becomes a central symbol for the relationship between the two Chippewa brothers and for the relationship of the American Indian to the modern world. The story subtly evokes ideas and attitudes about the plight of the Native American without actually addressing these issues overtly. The narrator…

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