Hands into his pockets, “Thrusting”

An Awakening, pp. 113. “For an hour Belle Carpenter and the young reporter walked about under the trees in the sweet night air. George Willard was full of big words. The sense of power that had come to him during the hour in the darkness in the alleyway remained with him and he talked boldly, swaggering along and swinging his arms about. He wanted to make Belle Carpenter realize that he was aware of his former weakness and that he had changed. ‘You’ll find me different,’ he declared, thrusting his hands into his pockets and looking boldly into her eyes. ‘I don’t know why but it is so. You’ve got to take me for a man or let me alone. That’s how it is.'”

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Other characters that put their hands in their pockets: Wing Biddlebaum, Seth Richmond, Elmer Cowley, Ray Pearson.

The word thrust occurs eight times in Winesburg, only in two cases does it not involve a thrusting hand: Wash Williams “thrusts” seeds in the ground of his vegetable garden, Elmer Cowley “thrusts” two ten dollar bills into George Willard’s hand. All of the other mentions involve thrusting hands into pockets, as here, except for one, which is of Elizabeth Willard thrusting her hand from out of the bed covers (extending a hand to death.)


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