Literary Analysis


Thetitle of the story chosen is “Who’s Afraid” is the title of thefiction story written by Whitty Joshua in the year 2012. The storytalks of a campus girl called Lexie who was being afraid of beingswallowed by a Night Butcher on her way home. Lexie has left thecampus late in the evening and started walking alone in an isolateddark footpath towards her area of residence. Upon arrival at herapartment, she was exhausted and went straight to her room. She hadforgotten to ensure that her door bolt was tightly closed. She aroseat 3.Am and realized that she forgot to close the door (Whitty,pp.1-2).

Lexiewas afraid that somebody might have stormed into her house becausethe door was wide open. She started shivering and feeling like shecould collapse. A slight sweat of fear started running down her backshe unzipped her dress to clear the sweat. The more she tried toimagine that she had left the door opened the more confused shebecome. In that state of confusion, she tried to reach her phone sothat she could call her mother. Upon holding the phone, she gatheredsome courage not to call and handle the issues alone. The fear couldnot go away because she found out that there were some frames of theblack line in her entrance door which acted as proof that there wasan intruder in the house. She became more afraid and started toimagine that she could become a victim of murder any time (Whitty,pp.1-2). Theessay focuses on offering a literary analysis of a fiction shortstory titled “Who’s Afraid.”

Literaryanalysis of a fiction short story titled “Who’s Afraid.”

Propercharacters development is the heart of the story. Characters act asdeterminants of whether the story will be interesting or not. TheAuthor of the short story who’s Afraid has used the direct methodin developing his character. The main charter in the story is Lexie,a young campus lady who has been portrayed as a coward. She feareddarkness and being alone she also fears things that do not exist.For example, she feared being stabbed with a knife by the NightButcher. Her cowardice character has been portrayed throughout thestory up to the point where she started realizing that she needs tobe courageous to survive alone (Whitty, p.2).

Othercharacters involved in the story are the Night Butcher and Lexiemother. The butcher has been portrayed as a supernatural creaturethat can storm in any dark place to commit murder. The author usedthe Night Butcher to develop the story and show the magnitude of feartowards the main characters. Also, Lexie mother is a minor characterin the story. Lexie mother was used in the story to bring out theelement of love and care. She was the source of strength to herdaughter Lexie. For example, when Lexie suspected that the NightButcher could have stormed in the house she tried to call her forhelp. The mother has been used in the story to bring out vividunderstanding of the main characters. She has also been included inthe story to show that despite being a caring mother she wanted tobring her daughter as an independent and strong woman. For example,Lexie mother withdraws all the money and leave her daughter with onlyenough funds for her transport (Whitty, pp.2-3).

Themoral implication of the character is that the story focuses onbringing out the best results about the character in the story. Inmost cases, the moral implications of a character influence theirdecision and the way they make decisions in different situations. Themain character, Lexie was displayed as a coward. However after goingthrough challenging and traumatizing experience at night in herapartment, she was molded and become a courageous woman. Besides, shestated knowing how to survive on her own and solve her problemswithout necessary calling her mother for help (Whitty, p.3-4).

Theprimary message/theme in the story is that children must learn toface the world without fear. For example, the main character, Lexie,has been transformed from being a coward to a courageous woman howcan survive alone and overcome difficult situations in her life. Thetheme is relevant to the contemporary society because it portrays theimportance of being courageous. Students must learn to deal difficultsituations without necessary seeking for help from their parents(Whitty, p.4).

Theauthor applies different scenes to influence the actions of thecharacters in the story. The first scene was a solitary walk from thecampus to home while the second one is the house. The Main charactersmoved around the house from the sitting room, bedroom and then to thekitchen. The movements from different scene help to indicate how thecharacter was nervous and afraid of almost everything. For example,most of the scenes were in dark places which helped the Author tobring out the element of fear Cleary (Whitty, pp.4-5).

Thestory relates to the current modern interpretation of the societaltrends in the sense that the characters used are part of the socialsystem. For example, Lexie and her mother form the aspect of a familywhich is the key aspect of the current societal trends. Also, theAuthor mentioned that Lexie was coming out of evening class fromWoodland center campus. The campus is also part of the currentsocietal trends because it shows that Lexie society value educationand influences the character actions (Whitty, p.5).

Althoughthe story has been able to demonstrate the theme of fear, it may faceliterary criticism because it prejudices women by portraying them ascowards and showing that men are supernatural beings (Whitty,pp.5-6).


Theauthor utilized the direct method in developing his characters in thestory. The moral implication of the characters action is to show howchallenges helped the main characters to become a strong, courageouswoman. The theme of the story is that children must learn to overcomefear. Such them is relevant to the contemporary society because itteaches children how they can overcome difficult situations withoutassistance from their parents. The author utilized different scenein the story to show how the main character, Lexie, was molded tobecome a strong character. The story relates to the current societaltrend in the sense that characters are part of the social system.Besides, the campus is also part of the contemporary social trend.However, the story is criticized because it portrays women as weakand coward characters which is not the case.


Whitty.J.Who’sAfraid? 15.08.2012. Web.02.07.2015&lt