Indigo By Hitchcock Essay Research Paper People

Indigo By Hitchcock Essay, Research Paper

People are born with passion. The irony is that most people spend all their

lives searching for that passion without looking inside that soul to the heart

of the passion. The trick to discovering that passion is to find what makes us

happy. For Indigo the main character of Sassafras, Cypress and Indigo by her

passion lies in the music she creates from her soul while using her violin as

her tool. From a modern literary criticism standpoint this passion is seen

through her characterization and the symbolic use of the violin. However in

peeling back the layers and focusing on this story from a Post ? Modern

standpoint the reader uncovers deeper issues. There is a sense of discontinuity

in the linear structure that leads to a discovery about the cultural issues in

this story. Indigo challenges the boundaries of her age and a society that

struggles to find a place for her and her soul. That is going under the

assumption that there is a place. ?Indigo did not tell her mother about Mr.

Lucas being so evil, nor did she mention that her new fiddle could

talk.?(Norton 43) With in the first few lines of the story Indigo?s violin

begins its transformation from merely and instrument to an extension of her

soul. Symbolically Indigo?s violin is representative of her soul. With her

violin Indigo pursues the passions of her soul as she struggles to find her

place somewhere between childhood and womanhood. Indigo?s mother begs her not

to play the violin anymore at night because the neighbors complained about the

awful noise. She forces Indigo to take lessons or go somewhere else to play. By

rejection her violin her mother rejects the heart and soul of Indigo. Only when

she flees to Sister Marie Louise?s shed is she able to play her music and bare

her soul to the world. The violin takes on the presence of sin in her life as

her mother forbids her to play. It is the forbidden fruit that Indigo longs to

taste. Indigo?s character constantly revolves through the turmoil of a young

adolescent on the brink of woman hood. ?Then she would blush, hurriedly out

the fiddle back into the case, the Colored and Romance having got the best of

her.?(Norton 45) Indigo is not ready to take that final step into womanhood

but she is brave enough to sample. Placing a label on the character of

Indigo?s out her into the category of a round character. Everything that she

experiences affects her both on the inside and the outside. IN fact much of

Indigo?s growth as a character is internalized and seen through the way she

plays the violin. Faced with the decision to learn how to play the violin by

record or quit playing for the people Indigo sets aside her passions and learns

ordinary music. Ironically, when this happens people stop coming by to listen

and the story begins to fall apart. Thematically this story center around a girl

who needs to find her passion and the steps that she must take to find them.

Indigo needs to find her identity and the easiest way to do so is to explore her

thoughts and feelings through her violin music. Through the development of her

character Indigo is forced to make decisions that affect the outcome of her

music and ultimately her life. The story ends in a very somber tome with a

funeral sequence. Indigo realized that the time had come to say good0-bye to her

childhood and the dolls she played with. She dressed in white and her mother in

black as one by one she carried her companions to the attic for a proper burial.

Her dolls were her last connection with childhood and after her experiences in

the underground she felt it was time to lay them to rest. Indigo?s act of

burying these dolls before they reached womanhood with her shows her attempt at

sheltering them form growing up. ?Mama I couldn?t bear for them to grow

up,? Indigo said in the final scene of the story. Indigo knew that she faced

challenges that would her to heartache in the adult world and by burying her

dolls maybe that was one small way of sheltering a small part of herself. She

already experienced a little bit of the heartache to come when she fled the

underground because of her music. Imagine for me a concert hall filled with

people all with hopes of attending a beautiful violin concert. The violinist

walks out onto the stage and begins to play a dire melody that hurts our ears.

Of course your ears are not accustomed to this ?music?. All your life you

grew up listening to Chopin and Mozart so this grating melody goes against

everything your ears have ever known. In fact it is so bad that people begin to

get up and leave and you with you classical trained ear really begin to listen.

The more you listen the awful minor melody begins to sound more appealing and

harmonious to your ear. The music affected you. For Indigo this was life. Few

people appreciated her music or who she was. Indigo in every way challenged what

the people around her believed was music. Her mother forced her out of the house

because she could not take the awful sound of her violin playing. Form a

post-modern standpoint this story flows with the issues of social restraints,

and cultural expectations. Indigo from a musical standpoint challenges what

people consider music. For her it was an extension of what she experienced

inside her soul. It was the depth of who she was. Sometimes that was not pretty

or what people wanted to listen to. ?Indigo stood up turned her back and began

to play those strange erratic non-songs she played each night.? Indigo

followed the music instead of making the music follow her. It was attempt to let

the music take her on a journey far from the streets of Charleston that held all

the pain of her past and her people?s past. Her attempt to challenge what was

traditionally thought of, as music is a heavy postmodern theme. Much of post

modernism is about challenging what is normal and making people uncomfortable

with it long enough until they begin to appreciate it or bring you back to the

?correct? way of thinking. Indigo is in search of a place to express

herself. Her mother forbids her to play in the house anymore unless she has

lessons. Indigo knows that if she takes lessons the violin will no longer sing.

Indigo?s mother tried to place Indigo into a mold that said music had to sound

a certain way or make you fell a certain way. Indigo?s mother is very

representational of society and its attempt to make things fit. This is contrary

to the ideas of post modernism and its almost urgency to not find places for

everything. Indigo?s haven became the underground of Charleston where people

went to gamble and drink. She played in the bars to men who had experienced more

than she could imagine. She brought out their soul with her un-melodic music.

She had the ability to take away their pain for just five minutes as she played

her violin. Her music offered an escape that they ahd not known was there.

However much like her mother the people began to realize that they could not

take all the honesty that Indigo expressed fron her music and they once again

placed restraints on what she palyed. Mabel, the bosses girfriend wnet out and

purchased records for Indigo and she learned to play by ear because she had no

other choice. Suddenly her music lost ots passion and desire as she was no

longer able to express her emotions and the emotions of the people she pkayed

for. She had been place in a box with a label on her. Much like the world tires

to do to all literature, and people. Another intresting facet of this story is

the challenge to linear structure. Shange in writing this challenges the readers

idea of how a story should be placed together. In fdoing that hough she insert

cultural ideas and expectations. Half way through the story indented on the page

our Indigo?s folk ideas about how to pick a lucky number.