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Literary Analysis of “Weight” by Dhonielle Clayton

Major theme of the story

“Weight” by Dhonielle Clayton is a story that revolves around themes of adolescent insecurities, materialism and the desire to fit in. The main character, Kay, feels insecure about her weight (Lawrence 31) and her social status. Her insecurity leads her to buy a dress she cannot afford, which soon becomes apparent when she wears it to the school dance and is publicly humiliated by the dress’s owner.

The major theme of the short story “Weight” is adolescent insecurity. Insecurity about body image, social status and identity are all common struggles for teenagers. The author does an excellent job of demonstrating Kay’s insecurity with her weight through her fixation on food, her desire to fit in with her friends and her refusal to eat at the school dance. Kay’s insecurity about her weight is apparent from the start of the story. She thinks obsessively about food, even while fixing herself up for an evening out with friends. A quote that illustrates this is: “I started with my hair.” This idea of self-improvement is brought up a lot in the story and represents Kay’s desire to conform to a certain ideal or look that she believes will make people like her more.

The major conflicts in the story

In the story “weight” by dhonielle Clayton, there are many important conflicts that make the story incredible. One of them is when her mother says she needs to go on a diet. Another significant conflict is when she feels like she has to be perfect. These two conflicts have a major impact on the character and the story.

One of the main conflicts in this story is when her mother says she needs to go on a diet. This is significant because it makes her feel uncomfortable and bad about herself. She starts to feel inferior, and she thinks that everyone is judging her for being overweight(Lawrence 39). “Mom’s always telling me I need to go on a diet, but I don’t know if it’s for my health or because I embarrass her.” This shows how upset the character feels from her mother’s comments and how she thinks that everyone is judging her for being overweight. “I mean, really, what else could it be? When you look like me, people assume you can’t get out of bed without help.”

Another vital conflict in this story is when she feels like she has to be perfect. This is important because it makes her want to lose weight just so everyone will accept her. It takes emotional, physical, and mental tolls on her.

She does things such as starving herself or eating very frugally thinking she would feel better about herself just because she lost some weight.

In conclusion, the story “weight” by dhonielle Clayton is involving and inspiring, as the weight of lost love is lifted by the characters desire to move on. While this story may include elements of tragedy, it also includes personal growth and transformation. The storys themes are best illustrated through the characters actions and relationships, throughout the stories conflict between them. Both Kay and her mother hope to find a new life after the events of their past relationship, and it is only when they embrace the future that they are truly able to decide what kind of life they will have.

Work Cited

Lawrence, E. E. “Is Sensitivity Reading a Form of Censorship?.” Journal of Information Ethics 29.1 (2020): 30-44.


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