After reading this article, I noticed how it put major emphasis on metonymy, which basically means a substitute for a word. The metonymy in Black Hole is AIDS and how it is applied to the juvenile characters of the book. In Vanessa Raney’s review of the book, she points out how Burns’ story brings out the perspective of the adolescents who experience this mysterious disease hands-on. After understanding this key point, I reflected on the book to connect this point with the reactions of the teens. Two scenes in the book that ring a bell back to Raney’s statement were: 1) when a group of teens react to the deformity on Chris’ back when she goes for a swim 2) Chris is at a fast food restaurant with her friend Marci; whilst pointing someone out with a deformed face and asking “Why do they have to come here to ruin everybody’s good time?” When tracing back to these moments in the story, I understand the kind of ridicule that these “outsiders” deal with. They become singled out by the rest of society and are treated as experiments gone wrong. Ultimately if I were to learn anything from this book it would be not to so harshly scold teenagers for their actions. These teens experimented with their bodies and were punished for it. Teen hood is being expressed as an eye-opener to the real world, as it demands a harsh repercussion for their sexual activity. They quite literally live and learn from their actions. Just as we have analyzed the harsh tones of the DC and Marvel Comics and True Diary of a Part Time Indian, the tone in this book is very realistic because of the adolescent point of view we observe through the images of this book – referring to the graphic imagery and how everyone reacts to what they see.


2 Comments so far

  1.    Asim Shariff on October 26, 2016 12:50 am

    The points that is made in your argument is interesting. I didn’t think about the book in that point of view. I agree with you that the book allows the readers to learn that mistakes are made. The “bug” allows the readers to see what life might have been like for individuals that lived with HIV or AIDS in the past. The lack of knowledge about the subject allowed those individuals to be judged by others like in Burns book.

  2.    Jonathan Eng on October 26, 2016 1:33 am

    I agree with your view on how these teenagers wanted to experiment, any simply failed. They never intended to get infected so they should not be ridiculed for it. But it is interesting on how the book has different effects on people. Rob is able to live a normal life yet some people get deformed faces which prevent a normal life. I feel the effects of the the virus being passed around is based on how the character feels about their infection. If they feel like monsters they become monsters and then everyone will view them as a monster.

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