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Wu Ting
How would you interpret this sentence? At first the news was about airlifts into Berlin, those desperate people now six months under siege. The American flyers are getting in more food than ever, thousands of tons, and now also coal so the Berliners won’t freeze. The interview was an air force man who said next month they plan to drop candy and toys from the planes, with little parachutes. “Those German kiddies will have Santa Claus, whether Joe Stalin wants them to or not,” he vowed. “Mr. Shepherd, how be ye?” she asked suddenly. I must have looked unwell. I blew my nose to preserve dignity. I’d been close to tears, for the most ridiculous reason. “I was thinking of my old boss, Lev Trotsky,” I confessed. “He would have loved that report. The triumph of compassion over Stalin’s iron fist. The people prevail, with candy and parachutes.”How would you interpret this sentence “The triumph of compassion over Stalin’s iron fist” in the last passage? I think it means what was reported in that report was a triumph over Stalin’s iron fist, right? But I’m confused about the word “compassion”. How would you interpret the phrase “triumph of compassion”? Thanks! And this excerpt is taken from The Lacuna by Kingsolver.
2015年6月1日 08:27
Answers · 2
I've not read the book so my understanding of it would be limited but here's my take on it: Triumph of compassion would refer to an act of compassion (the context here would probably the airlifts containing aids in the form of food and coal) that overcomes Stalin's rule. Basically the aid being dropped in is in some form helping to overcome Stalin's forces.
The airlift of food, coal, candy and toys is an example of compassion. That compassion will triumph over Stalin's strict control (iron fist)of Eastern Germany. There's a saying 'to rule with an iron fist', meaning to rule in a strict, harsh, unbending fashion.
Wu Ting
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