The Red Convertible By Louise Erdrich Essay

The Red Convertible By Louise Erdrich Essay

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To what lengths would you go for a loved one? Would you destroy something in hopes that it would save them? That 's what Lyman Lamartine did in hopes to fix his PTSD afflicted brother. "The Red Convertible" was written by Louise Erdrich in 1974 and published in 2009 along with several other short stories. Lyman, and Henry, are brothers. The story starts by telling us about how the two brothers acquired a red convertible. Henry ends up being drafted into the Vietnam War, and comes back home suffering from PTSD. One day the pair decided to take a drive to the Red River because Henry wanted to see the high water. Ultimately, the story ends with a cliff-hanger, and we are left wondering what happens to the boys. The symbolic nature of the red convertible will play a key role in this literary analysis, along with underling themes of PTSD and war.
One of the main symbols in the story is the red convertible itself. It symbolizes the relationship between the two brothers, and how it brings them closer throughout the story. The color of the convertible is also very symbolic. Since the two boys are Native American, the red convertible is supposed to represent their skin color. Both boys trade ownership of the vehicle throughout the story, but ultimately the car ends up in Lyman 's possession. As was stated before, the car represents the relationship between the two boys. In the beginning of the story, the car was vibrant and they took it everywhere, often going on long road trips with no particular destination. When Henry goes off to war, the car is still holding their relationship together. Henry comes home three years later, and in those three years Lyman kept the car in almost perfect condition for his brother.
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...(442). After his last words are said, the current simply, and effortlessly washes him away. Lyman watches Henry get washed away, and decides to lose the car in the water along with his brother. This is very symbolic, he gets rid of the one thing that sort of defined the brothers relationship. Its like Lyman didn 't want the car if they both couldn 't have it. This is another selfless thing that Lyman did because of the love he had for his brother.
There were an endless amount of themes and symbols in "The Red Convertible" such as the photograph, the car itself, the war, Henry 's PTSD, and many more. One of the most important themes of the whole entire story are family and love. Lyman loved his brother so much that he destroyed something that was precious to him. He did everything he could to save his brother, but in the end Lyman was happy that Henry was at peace.

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