Essay on Uprising by Margaret Peterson Haddix
The story, Uprising by Margaret Peterson Haddix is about the Triangle Shirtwaist Factory Fire which is shown through multiple perspectives. On March 25, a Saturday afternoon, there were 600 workers at the factory when a fire broke on the eighth floor. In the excerpts from the story Uprising, the author uses personification, similes, and internal monologue to help the reader understand how the setting affected the fire and to help the reader sympathize for the people that were in the Factory Fire.
The author uses Internal Monologue to help the reader better empathize for the characters and show different dimensions of the event. This is shown on page 283 when the perspective of Yetta takes place when she reflects on her year. The author writes “ Another year past and what do you have to show for yourself? So you can read English a little bit better… do you think that's enough?” This supports my claim because the internal monologue tells me that most of the workers were foreign and or young when it stated “so you can read English a little bit better”. Also, it gives the reader a sense that the working conditions could be better. Which gives an overall idea of what the character's think about their life in the factory. Another quote that supports my claim is on page 300 when Bella’s perspective is introduced. It shows how scary it was to be in the Factory when the Fire occurred. It states “ The Flames are going to get their first- no, we are!- no look how fast the fire’s moving” This helps the reader better understand the event because the character's perspective and words help give an option to the reader so they can understand how fast the fire was going and why. Also the author gives a stressful tone to show the reader how scary and chaotic it was.
The author uses personification to help the reader understand how rapid the fire was spreading. This is shown on page 299 when the author uses a verb to describe how bad the fires were spreading. The text states “The flames kept dividing, devouring stack after stack of shirtwaists, racing each other down the table.” This supports my claim because the quote shows that the Factory was not prepared for a fire. It also shows how fast the fires were conquering each level. The characters were trying to escape while the fires were briskly spreading. Another quote that supports my claim is on page 300 when it states “The first flame leaped from examining table to the first row of sewing tables. This also supports my claim because it shows that there were a lot of things stuffed into the factory so it was hard to escape. It also shows how the fires were coming out of nowhere so the communication wasn't stable as well.
Finally, the author uses Similes to help the reader have a better sense of the setting and the chaos that was occurring. On page 299 it shows how crammed the Factory was. It states “She was penned in just like a goat or a pig.” This shows the reader that since it was crammed it was hard to exit the fire but others were still trying to escape. This also reveals that the owners of the Factory were not prepared or didn't care. Another quote that helps the reader better understand the event was on page 288 when the character expresses her struggle because of the fire. The author writes “It was so hot now that her word felt like flames themselves, painful on her tongue.” This supports my claim because it shows the extremeness of the fire sweating up the room and also the anxiety rushing through her body trying to think of a plan.
In the excerpts from the story Uprising, the author uses Personification, similes and Internal monologue to help the reader better understand how the setting affected the fire and to help the reader sympathize for the people that were in the Factory Fire. Narratives help with the reader's understanding of history because the reader can have more connection through characters and narrative techniques than facts.