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Yue Zhou

ID: 85415714

RA Exploratory Draft


Octavia Butlers Parable of the Sower

Fire is a double-edged sword. It could bring warmth to people, and help people to survive.

However, it could also destroy peoples home and lives. In Parable of the Sower, written by

Octavia Butler, fire appeared for so many times. At different times, people used fire to reach

different goals. Some used fire to damage others lives and to vent their emotions, and some used

fire to get comfort and survive. Fire is a thing that has great power. It will show different power

when it is held in different peoples hands. Parable of the Sower is the story about how Lauren

got new hope after the fire destroyed her life. Fire played an essential role in this book. It

destroyed Laurens house and forced her to leave the only safe neighborhood. But after that, fire

helped her to survive in the night outside the town.

People are setting more fires to cover crimes. (Ch 13). Crimes happened everywhere,

such as robbery, rape, murder. Criminals set fire to destroy the evidences and bodies. Not only

did the criminals set fire, but also the other people who lived in the bottom of the society. For

people, fire became a method for them to vent their emotions. They burn whomever they dislike.

They can do nothing to make their lives better, so they set fire to destroy others houses and lives

in order to make others felt frustrated, angry and hopeless as they did (Ch 13). People there only
thought about themselves. They didnt have power to change their lives, and they didnt want to

get that power by put efforts. However, they could do something to make others live even worse

than theirs. Setting fire was the only thing they can do to show that they could still do something

to satisfy themselves. Fire became the symbol of declining of moral. People were no longer

trying to make their lives better. They became selfish and regard others who had better lives than

them as enemies. When fire appeared, it showed that things were getting worse in the world. Fire

pushed more people into the deeper hell. More people became unfortunate, more fire would be

set to make more unfortunate. Only when people realized that make others miserable would

make situation worse, this circulation would stop.

However, fire could still be a symbol of hope. When people became homeless, fire could

help them to survive. But people who have no homes will build fires. Even people like us who

know what fire can do will build them. They give comfort, hot food, and a false sense of security.

(Ch 16) Fire brought warmth to both peoples bodies and hearts. Hot food brought energy to

peoples bodies, which would allow them to be able to attack and defense. Fire could keep many

dangers away from people in the night. Staying with fire made people felt safe. At this time, fire

was no longer the weapon that took happiness away. Fire was the crucial thing that would help

people to survive. Fire allowed people to defense cold and beasts in the night, and it allowed

people to recognize the direction in the night as well. Although people might be hurt by fire, they

still could not refuse the benefit that fire brought to them. If there was no fire, people could not

even spend the first night outside the neighborhood. For people who lost their home, fire was the

symbol of hope. With the help of fire, they would have chance to leave the nightmare and look of

better lives.
Fire could take happiness away, but it could also bring hope to people. Fire was the hand

that push Lauren to the hell, but also the hand that pull her from the hell. When fire was used by

different people, there would be different effect.


1. Did I claim my thesis statement clearly? Or did I choose a wrong direction to analysis?

2. How can I use secondary materials to support my essay? I didnt find the place that

secondary materials can be placed.