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The Theme Of Fame In Ex-Basketball Player By John Updike - Essay Example

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The paper "The Theme of Fame in Ex-Basketball Player by John Updike" analyzes John Updike’s poem, “Ex Basketball Player,” which portrays the character Flick Webb, who used to be a famous basketball player while studying in school and which emphasizes that fame is momentary…
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The Theme Of Fame In Ex-Basketball Player By John Updike
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"The Theme Of Fame In Ex-Basketball Player By John Updike"

Download file to see previous pages Pearl Avenue in the poem symbolically represents the road to success, which is, according to the author, a hard one to follow. It has many “bends” and it “stops” and “cuts off” in many places, thus making it a difficult path to traverse. Nature does endow human beings with many talents. However, all the people who are gifted with such talents do not become famous and it transpires that achieving fame is not an easy task. Thus, by using the symbol of Pearl Avenue, to represent the road to fame, the author contends that humans cannot attain fame easily. This is the reason why, despite being a gifted player, Flick is not able to attain real fame. This is one of the main ideas that Updike wants to convey the theme of fame in this poem.In an interview, the author admits that most of his stories derive from his “interest in the phenomenon of an athlete outliving his time”. In the instant case, Flick does not remain totally committed to his call. Though he is shown as a highly gifted player, whose “hands were like wild birds” and whom “the ball loved,” he fails to maintain the cutting edge of performance, and, therefore, his fame vanishes. Thus, the author implies that simply by being talented, an athlete cannot sustain the fame. On the other hand, he or she needs to remain dedicated to the game and continuously improve his or her performance. This is the second idea about fame that the author wants to communicate to his audience through this poem. ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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