Disaster-Chapter 5 (Climax)

  1. When Joe shatters his knee joint, it is one of the most climactic moments in the text. Joe uses extremely descriptive language to explain how it felt to experience this and to draw the reader into the moment, an example of this is “My knee exploded, Bone grated and the fireball rushed from groin to knee.” this hyperbole and metaphor tells us exactly how he feels and what he is going through his head at that moment. Joe uses the comment “Something terrible something dark with dread occurred to me, and as I thought about it I felt the dark thought break into panic: I’ve broken my leg, that’s it I’m dead!'” to make us understand how extreme this disaster is and that death is the likely outcome. Joe also often refers to the pain as a fire: “the fireball rushed”,”a fierce burning ball”,”Stabs of fire”,”Pouring on fire” he uses this repetition to portray the idea of how the pain feels and to personify the pain and make it seem as if the fire is torturing him. Joe might also use the idea of fire to portray the pain as it contrasts the snow and ice of the mountains.

  2. When joe shattered his knee in the text he uses simons opinion to tell a different perspective of the disaster and explain how it felt for Simon as well as joe because in the situation Simon tells us that “he could get down the mountain by himself” but would have to leave joe, or he could risk both of them dying but he might be able to get both of them down the mountain. but Simon decided to try get Joe down and “It never occurred to me that I might also die, I accepted it without question.
    The use of Simons perspective also tells us how Simon plans to get them down the East Face safely and what he has to do to lower joe. at this moment Joe is only really thinking about his leg and the pain, so it is good to get a different perspective of the event.
    Joe interviewed Simon about his experiences in sections of their journey on Siula Grande and recounted what he believed to be Simon’s perspective of these experiences, Simon said that these recounts were accurate to his thoughts and feelings. this tells us that in the text all of Simons perspectives where not actually his own but an opinion of Joes, to what Simons perspective was at the time of the event. “Simon said that these recounts were accurate to his thoughts and feelings” this shows that Simon believes that what Joe has written is accurate to the truth but it still cannot be simons perspective because it was written by Joe

Tempting Fate – Chapter 2

in chapter 2 of Touching the Void Simon and his climbing partner have a very special relationship shown by the comment by Joe, “he was an easy friend”, the text also suggests that Simon is a role model for Joe and that Joe aspires to be like him. When Simon and Joe are climbing up the ice cliffs there is a huge amount of trust for each other’s abilities involved to make it up the mountains and overcome the challenges at hand.
at the start of the chapter, they are both enthusiastic about the climb and keen for the challenge but nearer the end Simon and Joe are starting to worry the might not be able to find a snow hole before dark the chapter ends with a flashback of a time joe was climbing in the alps and the ledge they had a bivi in collapsed and they where hanging in midair with nothing but their bedrolls waiting for a rescue.

Role of the author

  1. “The dreamers of the day are dangerous me, for they may act their dreams with open eyes, to make it possible”
    That the people who dream at day try to act their dreams with open eyes are dangerous because they are taking risks that are life-threatening.

  2. Joe likes being in the mountains. He enjoys the exhilarating feeling of the remote wilderness and there were no climbers no helicopters and no rescue just them and the mountains.

  3. The lines “he was an easy friend: dependable, sincere, ready to see life as a joke… a touch of madness that makes just a few people so special” tells us that Joe has quite a special relationship and they have been friend for a long time the passage “Simon was keeping a steady pace that matched mine” suggests that Joe and Simon are quite evenly matched and “there where few other people that I could’ve coped with.

  4. “Simon and I had found Richard resting in a sleazy hotel in Lima, halfway through his six-month exploration of South America.” this passage tells us that Richard likes to explore the world living off the grid and traveling to remote places living cheaply as shown when “He had lived off grubs and berries with pygmies wile dug-out canoeing through the rain. forests of Zaire.” and when “his traveling companion was shot dead by trigger-happy soldiers in Uganda.” Simon and Joe probably were quite impressed by Richards lifestyle and where happy for him to come along with them to basecamp and also to watch over the camp while Joe and Simon were climbing.

  5. When Joe says, “We were in the middle of the Cordillera Huayhuash, in the Peruvian Andes, separated from the nearest village by twenty-eight miles of rough walking.” it tells us that if something was to go wrong and they needed rescue they where a long way from any sort of civilisation and a very long way from help this foreshadows the idea that they will need rescue and something will go wrong.

  6. When Joe was alone climbing in the mountains he repeated the chant “We can do it… we can do it…” He probably did this to keep his mind on the task at hand and to make sure he was focused, because when mountaineering the cold can affect the human brain and cause it to make stupid decisions. the chant could also be to keep them motivated and with the feeling that they could do it.

What Is Included

Blackened fingertips create an image of frostbitten fingers in our mind trying to turn the knobs of the gas cooker.
We can assume the text is narrated by Simon, Joes climbing partner as it mentions the narrator talking to Richard and also referring to joe.
the phrase “The Chaotic Bustle of lima” places the image of a busy City opposed to the tranquility of the mountains as shown when Simon describes the “icy white sweep of Sarapo”.
The text tells us that Simon wants to stay in “Thrall of the Mountains” as shown by the comment from Simon “Something prevented me from leaving” with the phrase “I was afraid to return and face the music” backs up the idea that Simon does not want to leave”
the comment “it wasn’t a crime to have survived” gives us the impression that he has survived through a deep hardship and disaster.

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Chris Waugh