Through the Tunnel

by Doris Lessing

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In no more than two sentences, write a summary of "Through the Tunnel," including the title and author of the story.

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In Doris Lessing's short story "Through the Tunnel," the eleven-year-old protagonist, Jerry, practices diligently to be able to swim through an underwater tunnel in an effort to distance himself from the protection of his mother and prove his maturity both to some older local boys with whom he desperately wants to fit in and to himself.

Although Jerry does begin to exhibit many signs of maturation during this process, including the ability to delay the gratification of his wishes, by the end of the story, after he has successfully swum through the underwater tunnel, he no longer feels the same urge to fight for his independence, and he desires only to be able to return home, lie down, and bask in the warmth of his mother's approbation and praise.

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