Shadows in Haroun and the Sea of Stories

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Shadow theme The use of shadows in Salmin Rushdie's Haroun and the Sea of Stories is complex and intricate. The shadows themselves do not solely represent evil nor do they solely represent good. Although shadows range from many shades of gray, they do not exist in the extremes of light and darkness. Instead, they are combinations of light and dark. Therefore, the duality of shadows in the novel symbolizes the careful balance of good and evil. When the text introduces the shadows into the story, it casts shadows into a negative point of view. "But, sirs, you all know the stories about Chup!-That is a place of shadows…; of secret conspiracies and poison rings-Why should I wait near that awful camp?"[1] says Rashid. Words such as 'secret', 'poison', and 'awful' are used in conjunction to describe Chup. The negative connotations in these words indicate that all things related to Chup are somehow insidious in nature. Therefore, by stating that Chup is a "place of shadows", 'shadows' become just as insidious as Chup. As Haroun approaches the Twilight Strip, Butt notices that Haroun was suffering from "a Heart-Shadow (121)", the symptoms of which are manifested in Haroun's thoughts: 'With our absurd armada,' he despaired, 'how can we ever succeed in that world…. The closer they came…the more formidable the prospect of the Chupwala Army became. It was a suicidal mission….they would be defeated, and Batcheat will perish, and the ocean be would irreparably ruined, and all the stories would come to a final end. The sky was dim…it echoed his fatalistic mood. (121) Once again, the shadow is being associated with mayhem and doom. The Heart-Shadow's influence is has turned Haroun into a pessimist. He describes the Guppee forces as "absurd" and their mission as "suicidal". Furthermore, Haroun predicts the future with the words, "defeated", "perish", "ruined", "final end", and

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