I denne study guide kan du få hjælp til at analysere novellen "The Red Line" af Charles Higson, som kan findes i antalogien Now & Zen - Post-Modern Stories from London, s. 62-73. Du kan også finde et summary af teksten samt idéer til fortolkning og perspektivering.
Præsentation af teksten
Titel: “The Red Line” (1993)
Forfatter: Charles Murray "Charlie" Higson
Genre: Short story
Charles Murray "Charlie" Higson (b. 1958) er en engelsk skuespiller, forfatter og komiker. Han er blandt andet manden bag en serie af ungdomsromaner kaldet The Enemy, som foregår i et postapokalyptisk London.
Higsons novelle "The Red Line" blev udgivet i 1993 i The Time Out book of London short stories.
Nedenfor kan du læse et kort uddrag fra vores study guide til teksten:
The title of the short story “The Red Line” by Charles Higson does not immediately indicate what the story is about.
Berto, an Italian man who speaks little English, is lost and cannot find his way back to the home of Cathy, his love interest. When he finally gets the courage to ask someone for directions, the man he speaks to stabs him, and Berto is left bleeding and alone in the Underground carriage. Berto’s blood forms a red line on the floor, which reminds him that he was supposed to take the “Red Line” (the Central line) of the London Underground to reach Cathy’s.
The title’s meaning is, therefore, both literal and symbolic. The red line of blood becomes a symbol of the Red Line of the Underground but also, from a broader perspective, a symbol of the alienation between the characters.. It also becomes a symbol of Berto’s death, as he decides to follow the red line: “All he had to do was follow the red line as it slowly made its way across the carriage floor.” (p. 73, ll. 36-37)
While the London Underground system is supposed to be a place of connection (transporting people from one part of the city to another), the relationship between the colour of the Central line on the map and Berto’s blood suggests the lack of connection between people living in big cities. None of the characters trust each other, because they are afraid they will be misunderstood, laughed at, or attacked.