Why is "The Leap" a suitable title for the story, considering the literal and figurative leaps?

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In "The Leap," a number of literal leaps take place. First, Anna makes a leap by saving herself when lightning strikes the tent she is performing in. Second, Anna makes a leap when she is recovering in the hospital and falls in love with her doctor. This leap leads to the birth of the narrator because the two get married and have a baby. Finally, Anna makes a literal leap when she rescues the narrator from her bedroom during a house fire.

The title of this story is, therefore, an appropriate one because it directly refers to these physical leaps. Looking deeper, there is also clear evidence of a figurative leap. That is, the leap of faith Anna takes when she rescues her daughter. Anna knows that going into a burning building is a risky venture with no guarantee of success, but her love for her daughter is so strong that she will do anything to save her life.

Figuratively, then, the title also alludes to this leap, a leap that is symbolic of a mother's love.

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I would also want to focus on how the final leap that ends the story symbolises the love and close relationship that the narrator and her mother share. The way that they are described as being so close together as they fall, and the caresses of love that the mother gives to her daughter, make this an incredibly intimate moment.

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The title is appropriate because the "leaps" that Anna, the narrator's mother, makes in the story symbolize the choices she makes during her life, choices we all have to make. These decisions affect Anna's life and the lives of her children, even though Anna is unable to save her first child. Because Anna survives, however, she meets her second husband, and he teaches her to read while she's in the hospital, a ritual the narrator continues when she moves back east with her mother.

The two physical leaps are also emotional leaps. The first comes when Anna, seven months pregnant, is performing with her husband, and lightning strikes the tent. Anna chooses to try and save her child rather than die holding on to her husband's ankle, symbolizing her emotional leap. The child is stillborn, and the narrator feels a connection to her throughout the story, considering her a "less finished version" of herself.  The second physical leap occurs when the narrator is trapped by fire in her bedroom upstairs. Anna uses her skills as a trapeze artist to rescue her daughter, symbolizing a leap of faith that she can save this child, and she does.

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Name all the leaps, both figurative and literal, that occur in the story "The Leap."

The narrator in "The Leap," by Louise Erdrich, is the daughter of a former circus acrobat named Anna. The title of this story refers to both Anna’s physical leaps and her figurative leaps. As an acrobat, her routine includes a leap from a trapeze to meet her husband in midair while both partners are blindfolded. This leap itself includes physical and figurative elements: believing that her husband will be there to catch her is itself a leap of faith.

During their final act together, the circus tent pole is hit by lighting, and the electricity runs down the wires. Her husband falls to his death, but Anna is able to save herself. She is hospitalized for the next month and a half and falls in love with her doctor, who teaches her to read and write. Reading becomes a new form of flight for her, and she exchanges “one form of flying for another.”

Anna does leap again, although not as a performer. She leaps from a tree branch to rescue her seven-year-old daughter from their burning farmhouse, saving her life when the firefighters are unable to do so. Anna and her daughter then fly from the window together, landing in the safety net and surviving their brush with death.

There is one more leap in this story, although it is not explicitly labelled that way. The narrator leaves her life behind to move in with her mother, who is now blind and can no longer read. Her move is a leap as well, from her old “failed” life to the role of a caretaker.

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Name all the leaps, both figurative and literal, that occur in the story "The Leap."

  1. The young, beautiful Anna of the Flying Avalons leaps to a pole that burns her hands, but her fall is broken and she lives when her husband dies because of his fall.
  2. Because of her fall Anna must go to the hospital and have her broken arm tended; while there she falls in love with the doctor, who has her "leap" from illiteracy into literacy
  3. Anna leaps from a tree branch onto the roof of her house where she hangs from the gutter and rescues her daughter.
  4. With the daughter in her arms, Anna leaps to the firefighters net 
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Name all the leaps, both figurative and literal, that occur in the story "The Leap."

The narrator of the story focuses on her blind mother, who was a circus performer. The first leaps are the ones she took in her act. There are also narrative leaps in the story. For example, the narrator reviews the three times she owed her life to her mother. Her mother had to leap out of danger when her tent was struck by lightening and she was pregnant with a baby that was born dead.

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