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The Tigers Bride - Angela Carter
Transcript of The Tigers Bride - Angela Carter
Angela Carter begins "The Tiger's bride" with a short, tension filled sentence. She does this in order to create suspense and to get an important point across to the reader. This first sentence: "My father lost me to The Beast at cards." is written to prepare the reader for the story ahead.
Themes & Symbols
Theme: A key theme in this story is the objectification of women. It is used to turn the protagonist from being a controlled character to being a powerful narrator. Throughout the whole story the heroine is continuously being compared to an item. It is noticed from opening scene of “The Tigers Bride” that the character is seen as an object. The heroine must embrace her animalistic qualities in order to free herself of objectification, after she realises she is in fact an object. The theme of objectification shows when the father of the heroine loses her to the Beast during a game of cards. This indicates that she is thought to be no more than a possession. Words such as “pearl” and “treasure” are used, which would normally be understood as compliments. However, Carter uses them as objectifying terms of affection by having the heroine’s father and the Beast use them in the context of her sale.
“my own skin was my sole capital in the world and today I’d make my first investment” even the narrator has accepted the fact that she is an unvalued piece of property the soubrette that Carter talks about echoes the clothing and mask of the Beast: the too perfect mask behind which he hides his true bestial form
A Russian nobleman traveling with his daughter arrives in Italy. The father is a drunken gambler. He plays cards with The Beast- a mysterious and disguised figure. The father loses everything to The Beast. In order to pay his debt, he carelessly bets his daughter, thinking he wouldn't lose her. She is taken away the next morning by the valet. He tells her that The Beast will repay her father if she reveals her bare body to him. She mocks and declines his proposal and so The Beast sheds a tear.
The next day, the girl was presented with a tear-shaped earring, which she dismissed. When re-asked to appear naked in front of The Beast, the girl remained silent causing him to shed one more tear. The following day, another tear-shaped earring is offered to her, but she rejects it once again. She then goes out riding with The Beast and he insists that she see him without his disguising mask. The girl is genuine by him in animal form and exposes her naked body to him. Later on, she sees her father is wealthy, meaning The Beast has kept his word. A clockwork servant goes back to the girls father on her behalf, as she decides to stay with The Beast. Later on the girl strips again, but decides to wear both tear-shaped earrings. The earrings turn back to water as The Beast licks her human flesh away to reveal the animal fur beneath.
In this short story Carter demonstrates the inhuman characters features by using metaphorical language and adjectives. These are used to construct vivid descriptions of the beasts characteristics. An example of a metaphor is: "as if his master were the clumsy doll and he the ventriloquist." Furthermore, throughout the story the writer uses poetic license. This is done to create effect.
At the beginning of the short story, Angela Carter uses a lot of punctuation- colons,semicolons and commas. This is a replacement for the word ''and'' creating stress on the words which are to follow. It also implements a slower rhythm of text, preventing the smooth flow of a sentence.
She uses symbolism all through the story to portray the dark reality of humanity
the only things she kept the same were: the rose, girl, beast and his castle/house
the white rose that is tainted with her blood that she gives her father is a symbol of her purity and innocence that will soon be destroyed.
Towards the end of the story, the protagonist realises in order to break the stereotypical society; she needs to face her weakness. By exposing her body to the beast, she is revealing everything she is afraid of. This resulted in the strengthening of her individualism and acceptance of her new, stronger self.
: “the lamb must learn to run with the tigers” implies that Angela Carter feels women need to break free of their weak identities and embrace the parts of them that are strong
The beast is a manipulative yet clever being, who is experienced and cultured. He managed to take advantage of the fathers situation, in which we can tell he is empowered. However,The Beast tries to hide his unique appearance from society in hope that people will learn to love and appreciate him for his character, not pre-judge him because of his look. This introduces a shy and embarassed side to him, which later develops to vulnerability as he sheds the tears.
The girl (narrator) at first is portrayed as a victim to her father's actions, in which she has no control over. At the beginning she seems as a humble observer, however as the story progresses she looses this innocence and becomes stronger and independent. This shows the change from a ''girl'' into a women, which is is often what occurs in Carters stories.