Consistent Vagueness

I am still interested in how language is functioning in In the House… and in this section there is more reference to the husband and wife’s language, although this time it is in relation to the bear: “The bear did not speak precisely, could not form the mouth shapes necessary to make the words of our language…this speech so unlike my own yet somehow translated by the fingerling…” (83) Bell seems to be consistent in vaguely describing this language – never specifying if it’s English, or French, a made up dialect, sounds, or signs; and somehow the fingerling can understand this language but also that of the bear, which brings into play another point of power within the fingerling. Additionally, Bell’s vagueness about the language made me wonder about the vagueness of other parts of the story. For example, after the bear tells the husband about his wife’s deceit, the bear explains something else to him: “…she told me that upon the dirt between the lake and the woods, always there were two that appeared, and always the two made a single child.” (87) Two what? I think we can assume that the wife and husband are human, because they follow many of the humanistic conventions that we are familiar with, however I don’t think Bell explicitly tells us that they are human. I also battled with this a little when reading about the husband’s transformation. He undergoes physical and some mental transformations, but can we fully understand the entirety of his end transformation if all we have of his “original self” is that he is a husband, and somewhat of a father? Is being human even important to this story? I think it is if we try to find deeper meaning in the events playing out, but I’m not sure if Bell intended it to be. 


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