Dangerous Secrets in Tobias Wolff?s Hunters in the Snow
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Dangerous Secrets in Tobias Wolff's Hunters in the Snow
In Tobias Wolff's 'Hunters in the Snow', the three main characters each have secrets which they are concealing despite their friendships. These obscuring truths later cause trouble for each of the characters and will lead to their destruction. How will their decisions and lies impact their relationships?
The first character introduced in the story is Tub. Tub is portrayed as being rather large. The reader?s first image of Tub is when Kenny says, ?He looks just like a giant beach ball with a hat on??(117). Tub?s inner conflict is his weight, which he lies about throughout the story. Tub is obviously self conscious about his weight and is in denial about his gluttony. He hides cookies and sandwiches in his clothes, but in the presence of his friends, he acts as if he is on a diet and eats a boiled egg and celery. His friends mock him about his diet and can see that he is not loosing but gaining weight.
Later in the story, Tub finally reveals to Frank the truth about his gluttony. Tub admits, ?I?ve even got stuff (snacks) in the paper towel machine at work?Oreos, Mars Bars, Twinkies?(126). I believe that Tub reveals his secret to Frank because he wants help and he knows that Frank will be understanding. It is after this incident, that Frank takes Tub to a restaurant so he could eat until he was completely full.
The second character in the story is Frank. One gets the impression that Frank is very masculine. He repeatedly tells Tub and Kenny things that would make them more of a man.
When Tub complains that he is cold, Frank tells him to ?Stop bitching?Get centered?(118). Later, Frank tells Kenny that he is too talkative, as if men should not talk too much. This co...
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...he held inside because of the constant mockery from Kenny and Frank, combined with his denial about gluttony, made it easy for him to shoot Kenny. Tub finally stood up for himself and protected himself. When Frank found out that Kenny was merely joking, his reaction was unsurprising and unsympathetic as if he knew an incident like that was soon to come and this was foreshadowed by Frank earlier in the story when he told Kenny ?You?re asking for it?(118). Although, the reader does not know exactly how Frank?s and Tub?s lies will impact their lives, one does see how Kenny?s lies will probably cost him his life because the hunters had taken the wrong turn and were not on their way to hospital.
Wolff, Tobias. "Hunters in the Snow." Perrine's Literature: Structure, Sound,_and Sense. Ed. Thomas R. Arp and Greg Johnson. New York: Heinle and Heinle, 2005.