Greasy Lake by Tom Coraghessan Boyle

 
Greasy Lake by Tom Coraghessan Boyle is based on a story regarding a number of adolescents who were looking for a situation that would lead to them being declared as bad boys and how they would have their mind transformed. The narrator begins the story with an impression that he together with the rest of the boys ought to have discerned some observable clues regarding them. These signs would have given them an indication that they were indeed very far from what they expected to achieve, bad boys, as they had always wished to become. Nevertheless, these ignorant teenagers pay no attention to the evident clues and proceed to search diligently for the goal they wished to achieve.
In building this particular story, Boyle clearly shows how the setting reflects the characters in the story as well as the encounters they have especially in the Greasy Lake. Through this captivating story, the writer exhibits has the setting of the story by employing a lot of symbolism in an attempt to build on his intended themes. In the narration of the story there are three vehicles that have been mentioned and this is one incident in which the author has used symbolism. The conflict of Good versus Bad can be easily portrayed through nature and this same case when it comes to human nature. This is evidently demonstrated by the writer in the way the lake has been used in the story Greasy Lake to demonstrate its importance and association to the characters. At one moment this lake was a center of splendor and purity but as the story unfolded, this became a total contrast with the manner in which the lake got transformed into a completely opposite encounter. The nature of the lake is however tied to the characters and mirrors them effectively as a result of the similarities the lake shares with these characters and this is a major function of the setting as developed by the writer. For example, the narrator says, “We were bad. At night we went up to Greasy Lake”. (Boyle, 124). This is a clear demonstration of the importance that the environment chosen by the characters for them to be is vital to their true reflection (image). Also, not once has the writer referred to the boys as being ‘greasy’ in aIDition to other people who hang around the Greasy Lake a thing that may appear coincidental but its all based in the setting of the story.
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