PTSD in Chapter 10 and the Candle Story

Last spring, Joe and I were both in an English class dedicated to trauma theory in literature. We frequently discussed PTSD and how it was represented in literature, and throughout the semester (through theoretical readings along with literature), we came to define PTSD as the perpetual experience of a traumatic event from the past as the present. In other words, someone with PTSD continuously feels as though an experience of trauma (which actually took place in the past) is taking place in the present. 

I’d like to highlight a few places where the text of Kind One expresses this concept in the reading for today:

  • p. 155 (Ginny):  “Comes a day when everything you thought you had put behind you sets up its tent in the middle of what you were still hoping you could call tomorrow and yells out, ‘Right this way.'”
  • p. 161 (Zinnia): “What I walked away from one late spring morning in Kentucky I vowed never to walk toward again…[but] I carried it here.”
  • p. 162 (Zinnia): “I told him it was the old days come to visit.”
  • p. 179 (Zinnia): “THey say once you’ve had the shackle on you it never comes off.”

One comment on “PTSD in Chapter 10 and the Candle Story

  1. I’m glad you brought up that definition as I had forgotten it, and to add to your list of quotes, there’s a good one from page 153 when she runs into the ferryman who asks her what she’s running from and she replies “‘You’re looking at it.'”

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