Camillo receives multiple letters. However, the last letter posed the most threat as it symbolized hate. The fact is unbeknownst to the reader at the beginning of the short story. After Camillo receives the letter from his best friend, readers are still unable to distinguish the importance of the letter. However, readers soon discover that Villela writes the letter out of anger and suspicion that something strange was going on with his wife. Villela was determined to figure out what it was. The author, Machado de Assis, ensures that the letter and its meaning remain questionable and ambiguous throughout the story. The letter states “‘Come immediately to our house; I must talk t...
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In “The Fortune Teller,” the author, Joaquim Maria Machado de Assis, uses symbolism to prove to one that an affair is not worth a person’s life. He uses the letter to symbolize hate between Villela and Camillo regarding the affair. This very ambiguous letter has terrified Camillo and put an end to his life. The letter enhances the theme of the short story by showing the anger and hate that Villela now had for Camillo. This hate is a focal point in the short story that leads to ending the affair along with Camillo and Rita’s life. Ultimately, the affair caused a large amount of tension between the three. However, the author was successful in grabbing the reader’s attention with the letter as the turning point of the short story.
The Fortune Teller
James Daley, Editor The World's Greatest Short Stories, (Dover Thrift Editions) 2006
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