Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close encourages us to closely examine the time we have in our lives.
We never know when the last time we will be seeing someone will be, we must be responsible with how we spend our time and we are responsible for the way we treat people. The message that is conveyed to me an abundance of times is to not take advantage of the time you have, because it ﬂies. This is represented on the pages with red ink (pages 208-216).
The commas are circled as if they are a mistake. Commas represent a pause in the sentence, and with most of them circled it infers that time moves very quickly. The red pen pages, also represent looking closely at something. The circled red pen means that there is an error there and we must look closely to ﬁx it. Therefore the author wants us to closely look at the way we distribute time in our lives.
3) The unique narrative style in Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close is chosen to further prove certain themes throughout the book. One way that this book is unique is the fact that it is ﬁlled with symbolic pages.
The blank pages are a very strong way to express the themes in the novel. These pages thoroughly express points that Foer is trying to make throughout the novel. Page 121 is an example of a blank page, conveying the constant theme of emptiness. The blank pages represents Oskar’s grandmothers mind. She does not want to think about anything, she is suffering from loss and emptiness inside.
The photos scattered throughout the book of doorknobs conveys another big message in the book. This message is one door closes, another door opens. Even though the protagonist is faced with a loss and is looking for closure, eventually he obtains the closure by meeting many new people to ﬁll the empty space within him by literally opening new doors. This narrative style creates a more interesting
thought provoking reading experience and that is why I believe Foer has chosen to include these symbolic pages.
4) Oskar, his grandmother, and the renter all have loss in common. They all have a feeling of emptiness inside them. Oskar’s father “died the most horrible death that anyone could ever invent” (201). Grandmother and the renter have both lost a son, and Anna. Grandmother’s husband “the next morning he went to the airport” (185.) He had left her, she had lost him. Besides the common loss that they share, they all have issues involving thinking.
The renter and Oskar have the problem of overthinking everything in their lives. The overloaded pages, like page 282 express the renters thoughts clouding up his head. The renter used thought as a reminder to let him know he was alive during the bombings of Dresden. He just would think and think to know that he was alive, his brain was overloaded. Oskar is similar with the fact that he could never stop his thoughts. Oskar expresses that “all [he] wanted was to fall asleep at night but all [he] could do was invent” (258).
Oskar invents many different things, like “a teakettle that reads in Dad’s voice”(1) and many other things that just keep going through his mind.. Grandmother differed from them in thought, Grandmother would try not to think. She would write blank pages so that she did not have to think about a single thing like everything that has gone bad in her life. Although Grandmother relates to thinking in the opposite way, she still has thought in common with them.
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