The Use Of Imagery In Imaginative Writing By Janet Burroway

1046 Words5 Pages
The ability to make the reader immersed in the story and the main character is the best thing to have when writing a piece. It helps the reader decide whether to keep reading or not. This ability is known as imagery. Imagery is writing with metaphors and the five sense, which creates a scene for the reader. Imagery is basically the way the author shows the reader what the main character or narrator is seeing. Janet Burroway, author of “Imaginative Writing”, which is a book about writing and the components of it, states that Image is, “An image is a word or series of words that evokes one or more of the five senses.” (Burroway, 15) Imagery is very important and good authors know how to use it to add more meaning and power to their literature.…show more content…
The imagery is strong here because if Patricia just said he sat there watching “niggers” walk up and down the street like they run the place, the meaning of the poem would of not as been as strong and the image would be not as strong as the her she wrote it. The similes also make her imagery effective because the comparison makes sense and you really get the sense of racism with the simile and the main characters comments.
Another example of imagery that is strong is, “I look in the mirror and hold up my mangled hand, only the baby finger left, sticking straight up, I know it’s the wrong goddamned finger, but fuck you all anyway.” (Smith) Patricia uses imagery here perfectly. The use of descriptive words like mangled and baby, add the image of a man just staring into a mirror saying, “Fuck the world” and even though he does not have the right finger to do it he still uses it to replace the middle finger he lost.
The final example of imagery that Patricia uses perfectly is,
“It’s easy now to move my big body into
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This is effective because of her uses of descriptive words like “stark”, and “big, round and gleaming like cartoon jungle boys”. (Smith) These words add images in the reader’s head and when you read the “big, round and gleaming like cartoon jungle boys” (Smith) you get the image of two cartoon characters fighting in puff that cartoon puff of smoke where different parts of body parts pop out of the smoke during the fight and then instantly go back in to the smoke. These words show that the main character thinks this all some cartoon and the whole quote it self shows the reader that there are some sick people in this world, now and in the past that will do horrific things because a person’s skin color is different. If she left those words out and just said that I walked into a dark alley, because its hard to see me, and I beat black man with a pipe, the meaning would not be the same. There is a demonic effect that is parent when you read the quote and her use of imagery makes the main character seem more evil. Also they way she uses dialog in her imagery impact the sense of listening of reader. The part of the quote, “Hey, nigger, Abe Lincoln’s been dead a long time.” (Smith), really adds a more hatred in the interaction. If this line was apparent, the whole quote would not be so strong because the dialog gives the reader
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