The Ice Scene

So, I thought I would put in my two cents about the scene in “Gangster” with the ice and shadowy figure that pursues our protagonist.

I’m going to go out on a limb and say that I think the figure was a rapist. On p. 73, she mentions seeing a figure in the Jehovah’s Witnesses tower. Then, she is pursued by someone whom she initially thinks is good, but turns out to be a more malevolent presence. When she says she feels like she’s moving underwater (like in a bad dream. You know you’ve all had those dreams), saying “I can’t, I can’t,” it really gives me the feeling that she’s kind of hurrying along, not quite running, trying to ignore the person behind her. Then, when she drops the ice on p. 75, she says “I thought I felt my brother’s breth upon me. This was not the warmth I’d felt earlier, but a chill now in the center of my spine. The feeling was so confusing and frightening, I ran.” This just seems to me to be screaming “sketchy scene with sketchy dude.”

Then, she runs past the towers and sees no one (makes sense if they’re behind her). I think the book omits something about our lady’s appearance, because her mother immediately knows something is wrong. Perhaps her clothes were torn or something. Anyway, when she begins to give her description, her mother immediately tells her to be quiet, which would make sense considering how much the other Asian societies have really disliked discussion of sexual topics period, much less in front of the people filling the apartment. Then, I think that her strange reactions and explanations are the startled, confused, shocked reactions of one who has just been in a terrifying situation and has become disoriented. When she sees her shirt is wet, she notices her breasts, something which has come up a few times throughout the book.

I discussed this with Dr. Scanlon after our last class, and I know my argument isn’t fool-proof. Where I was viewing her brother as being projected onto this potential rapist, in an attempt to sort of deal with it, Dr. Scanlon said differently. Honestly, I can’t remember exactly what she said, but it was interesting. All should ask, if we don’t discuss it tomorrow (today?).