The Use of Foreshadowing, Irony, and Symbolism in The Book Thief Essay

The Use of Foreshadowing, Irony, and Symbolism in The Book Thief Essay

Length: 967 words (2.8 double-spaced pages)

Rating: Better Essays

Open Document

Essay Preview

The Book Thief Short Essay: The Use of Foreshadowing, Irony, and Symbolism in The Book Thief

In The Book Thief, by Markus Zusak, the narrator uses foreshadowing, irony, and symbolism. “Here’s a small fact, you are going to die” (3). As readers, we are engaged in the story because we are part of the story. The narrator, who is a personified death, is referring to the readers when he says “you”. Here, it is foreshadowed that many people, including the reader, will die in the near future. This is verbally ironic because death refers to this as a “small fact”, even though the subject of death is usually considered a significant and sensitive topic. This statement symbolizes the insignificance that narrator feels towards human life. In The Book Thief, death lets us know about crucial events that will happen later in the book to keep the readers interested. Literary devices such as foreshadowing, irony, and symbolism keep the reader engaged in the story and portray certain thematic ideas.
Foreshadowing in The Book Thief is one literary device used that some readers love and some readers hate. There are more than a few instances when the narrator, death, uses foreshadowing to keep the reader interested in the story and to further on certain thematic ideas in the novel. For example, death says that “Hans Hubermann was not granted membership in the Nazi Party. Not yet, anyway” (183). Here, it is being foreshadowed that Hans Hubermann will be forced to join the Nazi Party at some point in his life. By giving us this piece of information, the narrator is causing the readers to be curious and wanting to know more. This foreshadowing blends in with the thematic idea of war because by joining the Nazi Party, Hans will have to go fi...

... middle of paper ...

...t Max gave to Liesel as a gift. This book represents the power of words, and how words can make a difference in a person’s life.The readers are engaged because it is interesting know the back stories behind these books when we read about them in the novel. Finally, Hans’ accordion symbolises comfort in The Book Thief. When Hans leaves to go fight in the war, he leaves his accordion at home with Rosa and Liesel. This is the moment that Liesel know that Rosa truly does love Hans, although she might not show it. “Liesel watched. She knew that for the next few days, Mama would be walking around with the imprint of an accordion on her body” (429). Rosa, Liesel’s “Mama”, keeps the accordion close to her heart because it reminds her of her husband, Hans, whom she misses so much. In The Book Thief, symbolism attracts attention to certain thematic ideas and the novel itself.

Need Writing Help?

Get feedback on grammar, clarity, concision and logic instantly.

Check your paper »

Essay on The Book Thief By Mark Zusak

- Mark Zusak uses a range of techniques in the Book Thief to recreate Nazi Germany and tell a story from a different point of view… Death’s point of view. He incorporates a wide range of literary techniques to recreate experiences and portray emotions that were present during World War 2. One of the key themes in the Book Thief is that of humanity and what effect it had during the period of Nazi Germany. Zusak tells the story from an omnipresent third person narrator who is known as Death. This creates a dark tone because of how he narrates throughout the book....   [tags: Adolf Hitler, World War II, Nazi Germany, Nazism]

Better Essays
1397 words (4 pages)

The Use of Symbols and Symbolism in Homer's Odyssey Essay

- The Use of Symbolism in Homer's Odyssey There are three signs in the Odyssey which are quite significant to the epic and are symbolic of different things. The first sign is the scar, the second sign is the bow and the third sign is the bed. "Note the importance of signs in the works of Homer, such as the sign of the burning ship in the Iliad. Then there is a long flashback telling how Odysseus got the scar and the significance of it. The scar is symbolically important, for it defines who he is -- and what he is....   [tags: Odyssey essays]

Free Essays
942 words (2.7 pages)

The Book Thief By Markus Zusak Essay

- In 2005, Markus Zusak composed one of the most influential novels of modern day literature. His story is known as The Book Thief, a novel told from the perspective of Death. His role is to narrate the life of Liesel Meminger as a young girl growing up in Nazi Germany. Death begins the story at the burial of her brother in 1939, just one of many tragic events that will occur in her life, she is then given away by her mother, and has to grow up in the care of another family. For Liesel, this change catalyzes a quest to understand the power of words....   [tags: The Book Thief, Markus Zusak]

Better Essays
1298 words (3.7 pages)

The Book Thief By Michael Petroni Essay

- The Power That Lies Within Words “One must always be careful of books, and what is inside them, for words have the power to change us.” (Clare 4) The importance of words and the impact that words can have on people is often underestimated. The power of words is demonstrated in the film, The Book Thief, a screenplay written by Michael Petroni based on the novel by Markus Zusak, produced by Karen Rosenfelt, and Ken Blancato. Words hold great power over people regardless of whether it is found in books, movies, or said verbally....   [tags: Meaning of life, Life, The Book Thief]

Better Essays
1270 words (3.6 pages)

The Book Thief By Markus Zusak Essay

- The Book Thief, written by Markus Zusak, goes deeper than a girl’s story of struggle. In it there are intricate complexities, important themes, and significant symbols that add a different side to the story and go beyond traditional storytelling. Some symbols in The Book Thief include dominoes, Liesel’s stolen books, and Liesel walking into a parade of Jews. Throughout Liesel’s story, repeated themes also emerge. Two of the main themes in The Book Thief are Death and the Power of words. These themes and symbols intertwine into the story in a way that makes the novel more interesting and meaningful....   [tags: Nazi Germany, Adolf Hitler, The Book Thief]

Better Essays
1218 words (3.5 pages)

The Book Thief By Marcus Zusak Essay

- “The human heart feels things the eyes cannot see, and knows what the mind cannot understand.” This quote, stated by Robert Vallet, resonates with all human beings irrespective of their age, gender, or race. The Book Thief, written by Marcus Zusak and narrated by death, tells an eye-opening story from the perspective of a small group of Germans who silently, secretly and courageously opposed Nazism during the time of the Holocaust. While death is featured prominently throughout the story, ultimately, love shines through....   [tags: The Book Thief, Markus Zusak]

Better Essays
1488 words (4.3 pages)

The Book Thief By Markus Zusak Essay

- I read the “The Book Thief” by Markus Zusak, in which a little girl is thrown into an unknown world without her mother or brother. The main character of the book, Liesel, becomes a foster child in Germany during the 1940s. The book is over a span of years and we grow with Liesel. I really enjoyed this book and I would recommend it to anyone. It is set during the Holocaust, but it is still a coming of age book. I liked this book because the writer managed to write a book about a girl growing up and Nazi Germany....   [tags: The Book Thief, Markus Zusak]

Better Essays
721 words (2.1 pages)

Essay about The Book Thief By Markus Zusak

- Markus Zusak conveys the message that although putting others before one’s self is a very difficult task, it will always benefit more than it will regress in his novel, The Book Thief. In the beginning of the book, Liesel is separated from her only family in an instant, and the narrator explains, “There was the chaos of goodbye. It was a goodbye that was wet, with the girl’s head buried in the woolly, worn shallows of her mother’s coat. There had been some more dragging” (Zusak 25-26). It is clear that Liesel 's mother did not want to part with her, especially after losing her son moments before, but she knew it was the best option for Liesel’s security throughout the war....   [tags: The Book Thief, Markus Zusak]

Better Essays
809 words (2.3 pages)

Essay on The Book Thief By Markus Zusak

- To what extent is The Book Thief by Markus Zusak worthy of being deemed ‘Great Literature?’ The Book Thief is a relatively recent fictional novel written by Markus Zusak which tells the story of Liesel, a young German girl, and her life throughout the Second World War. Wrought with tragedy, the narrative is told from the point of view of Death, offering a unique insight into human life. Despite how contemporary the novel is, it has received droves of critical acclaim and is often considered to be one of the best books of modern times....   [tags: Fiction, Novel, The Book Thief, Literature]

Better Essays
1618 words (4.6 pages)

Essay on Irony, Satire, Symbols, and Symbolism in Voltaire's Candide

- Use of Irony, Satire, and Symbolism in Candide In the novel, Candide, Voltaire uses many literary writing tools to prove the points in which he believes. Some of these many literary tools are irony, satire, and symbolism. Through these tools, Voltaire proves that greed is a universal vice, and usually ends in ones own destruction. Voltaire strongly emphasizes his pessimistic view throughout the story. During Chapter 10, he uses his philosophies, as well as other literary tools, to present greed as a devastating factor of society's corruption....   [tags: Candide essays]

Free Essays
447 words (1.3 pages)