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Confirmation Names vs. Carpathia - Essay Example

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Confirmation Names vs. Carpathia

Vicky chooses the name Barbara after letting a boy read her palm; St Barbara is described as the "patron saint of those in danger of sudden death." The legend of Saint Barbara begins when her faith in Christianity strengthens; her father becomes furious and beheads her. Soon after, a lightning bolt strikes down her father. This event led to her being canonized a saint, who grants protection in time of danger from thunderstorms, fires, and sudden death. Saint Barbara is commonly characterized as standing by a tower with three windows, carrying the palm of a martyr in her hand. Lippo's choice of saints' names for each of his characters is a symbol of their personalities.
In Kercheval's "Carpathia", there is an ironic reference in relation to the Titanic ship. The icy water symbolizes the relationship between the father and the mother in reversed roles. The first note of this reversal is observed when the survivors are mostly women and children, and "only 2 sailors for each boat." In the second paragraph, it is glaring how the father feels, as he "stood looking at the icy water where, if he had been on the other ship, he would be." The father then proceeds to exclaim his choice of what he would have done if he were on the boat, as he exclaims, "They should have put the men in the lifeboats." The mother, disturbed, "was the one drowning."
Both short stories reflect internal conflicts. At first in Lippo's "Confirmation", the characters reflect themselves with the saints on the outside. However, the internal workings go much deeper. The woods represent the things "off-limits" to the nuns, but to the characters (both the saints and children) to them it is their own sanctuary. The Saints had all suffered martyrdom.
Carpathia's the internal conflict presented in the relationship with the mother and father. Both of them are disgusted with their choices and the events that had taken place. However, if the roles were to be reversed, according to the wish of the father, mother and her unborn child would not have survived, for "She was pregnant" and it felt like "she was the one drowning." The father would rather have them be in the icy waters and he be saved.
The conflicts are resolved. This is because in Lippo's, the conflict is resolved in the lasting closing paragraph about Magdalene, who was the secret patron whose spirit, they believed, watches over them from the trees. The characters involvement with the saints and the church, the forest and themselves, provides them a sanctuary. From the very beginning, the nuns had made the woods "off-limits" and "Magdalene, the whore." Nevertheless, the characters went into the woods, even before mass because "She was the saint who turned the flesh Divine." The confirmation was not a mere event to give names but a sacramental event in both the woods and the church, which both "studied the saints."
The conflict is not resolved in Carpathia. There are many emotional events taking place at the same time. The father had openly expressed his choice that the mother should have drowned.
"Confirmation Names," and "Carpathia" seem to be stories of two extreme opposites; they are closely linked to unearth a similar central conflict. Confirmation signify's new beginning, a life of prospects and adventure whilst Carpathia ...Show more


Although on the surface, "Confirmation Names," and "Carpathia" seem to be stories of two extreme opposites; they are closely entwined to unearth a similar central conflict. The nature of the dilemma presents itself in relation to the characters.
Lippo's and Kercheval's choice of words strongly reflect the themes in both stories, but is almost illusive in revealing the central conflict…
Author : marcia41
Confirmation Names vs. Carpathia essay example
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