Summary Of The Red Convertible By Louise Erdrich

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“Red Convertible.” “The Red Convertible” by Louise Edrich is one of the saddest stories I have ever read. It is about two Chippewa boys, brothers and the bonds of family and friendship they share. The story is told in the first person by one brother, Lyman Lamartine, and focuses on his relationship with his brother (or half brother) Henery Junior. Although they are brothers they are different in many ways. For example, they do not look alike, and the narrator states “we look so different” (236). Also, Lyman has a talent for numbers and making money while Henry Junior does not. Despite their differences, however, they have similar natures. Both are easygoing and kind. For example, when they decide to buy the red car they saw Winnipeg,…show more content…
At the river, Lyman “ felt something squeezing inside” him and it was what his brother was feeling at that moment (239) The connection of mind and body between them was like it always was, very close. Henery tells Lyman he can have the car for himself. This “giving away of things” is a sign that someone is considering suicide. In a pamphlet that my high school had, they were listing all the signs to watch for that spelled danger. One sign was when a person gives away things that are important to them, it is a sign that the person is thinking about killing themselves. This is seen in the past where Henery offers his brother full ownership of the car. Henery says” It’s no use.” In fact, just a little while later Henery drives into the river and is swept away by the current and drowns. “The Red Convertible” represents the relationship between Lyman and Henery. It represents their youth and carefree days. It is red, the color of blood, and it represents life. After Henery drowns, Lyman “drowns” the red convertible it does not exist on its own but as a part of his relationship with his brother. It is his brother and he cannot bear to see it or use it without Henery. All the time Henery was away, Lyman kept it waiting for him to return. Now, he lets go of it because he is without his brother. As it was foreshadowed at the very start of the story, Lyman walks everywhere he goes.

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