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Critical analysis of A gap of skycx

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Youth is often associated with freedom. You feel like you can do to anything and the world is under feet. However, being young is not always as easy as it sounds, because freedom comes with more responsibilities. Both are important, whoever you must figure out how to balance them. Or else you may end up having no control over where you are heading. In her short story “A gap of sky” from 2008, Anna Hope invites into the world of a young girl named Ellie. She is a typical student who struggles to find a balance between freedom and the responsibilities it comes with.

A gap of sky is writing from a third person narrator. The readers follow the story through the main character, Ellie’s thought and actions, fuck…fucking…yesss…blaaargh (1 page). Those are a stream of her thoughts formed as sounds and profanities, therefore, the text may seem disconnected. Her thoughts are impulsive and free. They are not structured, because a person’s thoughts are unsteady when they are affected by drugs. The writing style of the text is marked with spoken language: fuck… (p.2, l.2) fucking… (p. l.) blah blah blah… (p.2 l. 50). That is also because of the stream of consciousness, they are examples of things that a first-person narrator could have said. Because of this, it may be difficult for the readers to fully understand what she is saying. One other thing that is interesting with this writing style is the references to other texts. Many times, in the story Ellie mentions Virginia Woolf, who is the person she has to write an essay about. In fact, Virginia Woolf was one of the first writers to use the stream of consciousness technique.

Ellie drinks and take drugs, “Did she get booze? Cans, some cans of lager, and then more coke arriving and – K, didn’t they do some K?” (p. 2 l. 19-20). The drugs and the drinking are not doing her any good, for example in the story she has troubles remembering what she did yesterday. She has some ideas of what she did, but she does not remember it clearly. In addition, she has a drug problem,” Coke. Does she have any left? Find the wrap, in the bra. The bra, in tender little pile on the floor, curled around her knickers. Yessssss! Clever Ellie.” (p. 2, ll. 30-32). At first, she asks herself if she have some cocaine left, and after she remembers that she hid some in her bra. That makes her proud of herself for being that “clever”. It shows that she is desperate after them, and that she may be addicted to them.

Furthermore, the life style that Ellie has chosen for herself shows that she is not responsible. For example, she chooses to go out and party with her friends, instead of doing her essay: “She remembers the letter, the stomach-lurching letter: ‘If this lack of application continues we will have no choice but to reconsider your place on the course.’” (p. 3 l. 38-40) Although she seems scared to that fact that she may be kicked out, if she does not head her essay on time. So, this shows that Ellie do care about her school. That is why she goes trough all that trouble to find some ink to finish her paper. Moreover, she blames her parent for sending her there:” To Mum? To Dad? Not them especially not them. It was their fault she was doing this bloody course in the first place.” (p. 3 l. 65-66). Ellie blames her parents her misery. Everything is their fault. This also shows that she is not very responsible.

As she is wandering through London, Ellie is reflecting over many aspects of life. For example, she sees a glove, where the middle finger is pointing out. The glove makes Ellie feels like the world is full of possibilities, and in that moment, it becomes clear for Ellie that she is truly free, free to do whatever she wants: “she needed to get some printer ink before the shop closed, and she should write an essay, but really, she was free. She was totally and absolutely free” (p. 3, ll. 67-69). All the things that she is doing, she is doing them because she wants to. Nobody is forcing her to go search for the ink for her printer, as nobody is forcing her to write her essay. Everything is up to her. Ellie is the one who has control of where her life is heading. Ellie goes randomly in a British museum, while there is an exhibition about life and death. On a sign it says that the exhibit is about how different culture deals with life and death. And so, Ellie reflect over it, and she comes to that reasoning that she does not want to die yet. She notices that life is sometime extreme, “Only living, and if that was sometimes a little extreme, well, how should life be lived? That was the way she wished it, has always wished it, to dig, to the core” (p. 4, ll. 98-100) Whoever she concludes that having an extreme life style is not what life’s really about.

However, the story ends with Ellie acknowledging that she wants to go home and write her essay,” She will write her essay and that will be a good thing. A good thing and the right thing to do” (p. 5, ll. 131-132). She decides to do that on her own, because it is the right thing to do. The right thing for her. We all get lost sometimes, in the middle of freedom and responsibilities.

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