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The Arsonist
One of our most elegant and engrossing novelists at her inimitable best.
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So why do you think Miller titled the book for the most ambiguous character/theme?

Created: 08/02/14

Replies: 4

Posted Aug. 02, 2014 Go to Top | Bottom | link | alert
donnac's Gravatar
donnac

Join Date: 03/26/14

Posts: 29

So why do you think Miller titled the book for the most ambiguous character/theme?

So why do you think Miller titled the book for the most ambiguous character/theme?


Posted Aug. 03, 2014 Go to Top | Bottom | link | alert
tracyb

Join Date: 09/22/11

Posts: 29

RE: So why do you think Miller titled the book for the most ambiguous character/theme?

In my mind it was less about the arsonist and more about the main characters letting go of or burning their perceived lives. The Phoenix coming out of the fire is the start of something new, a rebirth. Fire brought people together in good & bad ways. Terror, change and the class truth of who, the summer people, was in power.


Posted Aug. 03, 2014 Go to Top | Bottom | link | alert
cynthiad

Join Date: 11/25/12

Posts: 23

RE: So why do you think Miller titled the book for the most ambiguous character/theme?

tracyb made some very good points. I like the thought of the Phoenix.
Even so, the title was provocative of the event - the Fires - that caused interaction of all the people.


Posted Aug. 03, 2014 Go to Top | Bottom | link | alert
cynthiad

Join Date: 11/25/12

Posts: 23

RE: So why do you think Miller titled the book for the most ambiguous character/theme?

claudiak has an excellent answer to this question. Thank you for sharing.


Posted Aug. 11, 2014 Go to Top | Bottom | link | alert
claudiak

Join Date: 08/11/14

Posts: 2

RE: So why do you think Miller titled the book for the most ambiguous character/theme?

I think Sue Miller's choice of her title emphasized how so many of the relationships in her novel both past and present had the potential of being destroyed as an arsonist can destroy a structure. I liked the ambiguity of the title.


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