Water for Elephants, post B, week 2

While reading Water for Elephants by Sara Gruen, it has become apparent to me that a major concept of this book is illusion.  Everything and everyone seems to be trying to give a perception of what they want people to think they are, rather that who they are.  For instance, uncle Al seems was described as having ringmaster written all over him because of his wardrobe.  The reason he wears clothes that will make him look like a ringmaster is so that people, whether spectators or the circus workers themselves, know exactly who’s in charge.  Also, it appears that Illusion is also a big part of the circuses acts and attractions.  For instance, the circus yellers and advertisements give off the illusion that Lucinda is 800 pounds, when she is more or less on the lines of 400 pounds. Also, they claim that Frank Otto got all of his tattoos from angry headhunters in Borneo, when really, he spent nine years doing them himself.  This concept of illusion and perception becomes very obvious when August is explaining to Jacob that in the circus, it’s all about illusion.  “’Tell me, do you honestly think this is the most spectacular show on earth?’” (p. 103)  August explains to Jacob that it doesn’t matter if he never did his final exams in college.  As long as people think that he is a veterinarian, than he is one.  I find that the author is expressing something that many people do in real life; they try to give a perception of themselves as something they’re not.  It’s obvious that illusion is a concept that will no doubt make its way back into the story.

(note to Mr. Hatten:  I finished this blog 30 minutes after 12:00 so the date will probably say it was done on the 30th instead of the 29th.  once again, I had choir and came home late.  thanks. 


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